A healthy number of NFL stars suffered serious injuries in the first half of the season, prompting a handful of websites to put together their versions of an all-Injured Reserve team. Cardinals center A.Q. Shipley knew injuries had hit several teams hard, but the severity of it hit home when he saw one of the “all-IR” teams. “It was as good as any Pro Bowl roster you’ve ever seen.” Not many teams have felt more of an impact than the Cardinals and Texans, who play Sunday at NRG Stadium. The Texans have lost defensive lineman J.J. Watt and quarterback Deshaun Watson, among others. The Cardinals have six starters on injured reserve, including quarterback Carson Palmer and running back David Johnson. It’s enough to make a grown fan cry. Players, however, can’t afford to. “There’s nothing you can do about it,” Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald said. “I learned a long time ago there are a lot of things in life you have no control over – the weather, traffic. But you always have control over your effort and your attitude. I try to make sure I have a positive attitude and give great effort. Whatever happens, happens.” The Cardinals (4-5) weren’t playing well when most of their starters were healthy, so maybe they were going to be average, at best, this season anyway. But those injuries increased the odds against them catching the Rams (7-2), who lead the NFC West, or earning a wild-card playoff berth. Take the Cardinals’ offensive line, for instance. Shipley has been the only constant, starting every game the past two seasons. On Sunday, the Cardinals will be starting their third different left tackle, Jared Veldheer, this season. Four players have started at left guard, two at right guard and two at right tackle.
Arizona Cardinals visit Houston Texans; stars have gone out for both teams
Arizona Central | Nov 19