As the Ravens get healthier each passing week, their foes seem to be trending in the opposite direction. That's at least the case with their next opponent, judging by the news coming out of the Arizona Cardinals headquarters on Tuesday.
In a serious setback for the Cardinals, who face Baltimore on Sunday in Week 8 of the NFL regular season, the team announced that starting tight end Zach Ertz has been placed on Injured Reserve.
Ertz suffered a quad strain last weekend in the Cards' defeat against the Seattle Seahawks, and the franchise has decided to lose no time and put their star player on IR, thus making him ineligible for the next four games starting this weekend.
Ertz has had a slow start to the season while recovering from knee surgery, racking up 27 receptions for 187 yards and one touchdown through the first seven games played. In the Week 7 matchup, Ertz managed to secure three receptions out of four targets for a total of 19 yards.
Although not at the peak of his powers anymore, Ertz surely is one of the best offensive weapons on the Cardinals roster and Arizona will surely miss his presence on the field come Sunday's matchup against the unbeatable Ravens' defense.
The Cardinals will also have to make a decision on starting quarterback Kyler Murray, who is now eligible to play but also still recuperating from ACL surgery. His return has been said to be coming "soon," although it is not clear if that means he will start in Week 8.
James Conner, the leading rusher for the Cardinals, is also on Injured Reserve due to a knee injury, removing another potential threat from the offense of Arizona. That makes it, potentially, three starters at three prime positions not playing against the Ravens in the starting QB, RB, and TE.
The absence of Ertz, coupled with the sidelined Conner and the questionable-to-play Murray only adds one more reason for the Cards to simply punt this match, keep their personal tank race alive, and aim for good draft positioning instead of a meaningless win this weekend.