Cards willing to wait for Jonathan Cooper

AP

The Cardinals know it’s going to be some time before they see first-rounder Jonathan Cooper on the field again, after he suffered a broken leg in their last preseason game.

But they aren’t willing to wait until next year, at least not yet.

According to Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic, the Cardinals plan to put Cooper the injured reserve/designated list, in hopes he can make a late-season comeback.

We don’t want him to be a rookie next year,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said. “Hopefully, that won’t be the case.”

Cooper had surgery Sunday to repair his fractured fibula, and they expect rehab to be at least 10 to 12 weeks. But they’re willing to hold out for a return like the Steelers did with David DeCastro last year. The Steelers’ first-rounder started the last three games after a preseason knee injury.

That will require the Cards carrying Cooper on their 53-man roster after final cuts, but for a player who many thought was the best lineman in the draft, it’s a spot they’re willing to use.