The Arizona Cardinals quarterback tore his left ACL in Week 10 last season and spent the next six months rehabbing the second major knee injury of his career – just like Mathieu – before returning for organized team activities.
At this point, just a few days removed from suffering the injury, Palmer said there are “a million things” going through Mathieu’s head.
“Because I’ve been there, I think the hardest thing is you just can’t help anymore and you feel useless,” Palmer said. “He shouldn’t feel like that. I don’t know if he can avoid it. Unfortunately, that’s competitors. That’s how you feel.
“He’s in a tough spot and all we can do is pray for him and be there for him.”
Coach Bruce Arians is hoping Mathieu’s recovery goes as smooth and quickly as Palmer’s.
Mathieu suffered a “clean tear,” Arians said, which means a return for OTAs could be possible.
“What these other guys are doing now, talking to doctors, they thought that this spring he’d be flying around,” Arians said.
But for now, as Mathieu waits for the swelling to go down so he can go through with the surgery to repair his ACL, he needs to just stay the course, Palmer said.
“He needs to do exactly what he’s doing, which is being around his guys, getting ready for the surgery, doing all the things he needs to do pre-surgery,” Palmer said. “But being around his teammates is probably the best thing.”