GLENDALE, Ariz. – Raiders defensive lineman Mario Edwards Jr. was on crutches following Friday’s 31-10 victory over the Arizona Cardinals, an unwelcome sight for any team following a meaningless exhibition.
A team spokesman said Edwards Jr. suffered a hip injury, though head coach Jack Del Rio declined comment on his ailment and the severity of it. The Raiders radio broadcast said Edwards Jr.'s x-rays cam back negative.
The second-year pro was seen leaving the locker room, and had a tough time putting weight on his left leg despite the use of crutches. It remains uncertain how much time he’ll miss.
Leaving the game healthy was a high priority, but that goal was dashed on the Raiders’ second defensive series. Edwards Jr. got injured tackling Arizona running back David Johnson, was attended to and then helped off the field by Khalil Mack and a head trainer. A cart took him from the sideline to the locker room for good.
The Raiders have three weeks left in the preseason, and certainly hope to get Edwards Jr. back before the regular season starts on Sept. 11. Edwards Jr. is a key component of the team’s defensive front, combining with Mack to make a dangerous duo on the weak side.
Denico Autry is expected to step into Edwards Jr.’s spot while he’s out.
This was Edwards Jr.’s first game back after suffering a sprained neck in Week 15 last season. He spent the offseason rehabbing it and was cleared to resume football activity just before a June minicamp.