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John Brown, Tyrann Mathieu cleared for preseason finale, uncertain to play

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Two more crucial pieces to the Arizona Cardinals' Super Bowl hopes were cleared to play in Thursday night’s preseason finale, but coach Bruce Arians isn’t sure if he’ll play either of them.

Arians said Tuesday that wide receiver John Brown and safety Tyrann Mathieu can play against the Denver Broncos, but “whether I play them, we’ll wait and see.”

That’s been his message with Mathieu the last two weeks.

Mathieu returned to practice on Aug. 21, eight months after tearing his ACL in Week 15 last season. He has been practicing with the first-team defense during 11-on-11 drills but didn’t play in Sunday’s preseason game against the Houston Texans.

Brown has been suffering from headaches since his first-ever concussion on July 31. Arians was unsure if the headaches were related to the head injury or another health issue, such as sinuses. Brown said he’s taking medication but didn’t know “too much about it.” Brown recently had two headache-free days, Arians said, but the hope was he could “make it through a practice this week.” The goal, Arians said, was for Brown to have another headache-free day so he could be cleared.

Brown said his focus was on getting through an entire practice without a headache induced by exercise. Brown said the headaches would set in “as soon as I’m standing up, walking around” and added “I’m doing fine now.”