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Kyler Murray Absent, Rodney Hudson Present: Cardinals Practice Notebook

Notes on Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray and receiver DeAndre Hopkins not being on the practice field; team preparing for San Francisco 49ers.

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray along with wide receivers A.J. Green and DeAndre Hopkins were absent during the open part of Wednesday's practice. 

Murray reportedly sprained his ankle after getting tackled from behind by Green Bay Packers safety Darnell Savage last Thursday. 

Backup quarterback Colt McCoy was conversing with head coach Kliff Kingsbury through most of stretching. 

Hopkins usually misses Wednesday practices for rest, but in this case, he is dealing with a hamstring injury that limited him to 15 snaps in Week 8. 

Green is typically out and about Wednesday practicing in limited capacity, so his absence was unusual. 

Running back/special teamer Jonathan Ward was also out as he recovers from a violent collision on kick return coverage Thursday. 

Fortunately for Arizona, rookie inside linebacker Zaven Collins was back on the practice field after he went down with a shoulder injury last Thursday. He only played three snaps, but he was active during the open portion of practice. 

Practice notes:

Who was back

While there were some big names not on the field, Wednesday's practice looked rather full in many spots. 

Center Rodney Hudson was back after spending three weeks on injured reserve. He was designated to return Tuesday which opens his door to play this week. 

Backup center/guard Max Garcia was also in uniform at practice. He did not play last Thursday because of an Achilles injury. 

Kingsbury said Hudson was able participate in walkthroughs, but both centers are still wait-and-sees. 

On the defensive line, Rashard Lawrence (calf) and Corey Peters (COVID-19) were participating after they each missed multiple games. 

Peters is a player who usually does not practice Wednesdays, but he made an exception perhaps to get back into playing shape after being on the COVID list for 13 days. 

Photo: Alex Weiner, Sports Illustrated

Edge rusher Chandler Jones is another Cardinal who is usually absent on Wednesdays and was practicing. 

Finally, offensive lineman Justin Murray was working out on the side field. He has been on injured reserve since Oct. 8.

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Kyler Murray's status

Murray is still day-to-day, and Kingsbury said a decision on his availability may not get made until game day. 

Murray was rehabbing inside during Wednesday's practice. 

Kingsbury said he is comfortable putting Murray in the game even without practice. Murray not being able to run as often also is not a deterrent. 

"He's done a great job from the pocket, great completion percentage, protecting the ball, so we feel good about him being able to operate even if he can't have his full array of weapons," Kingsbury said. 

Murray added: "Taking it one day at a time. I agree with (Kingsbury) as far as practice reps and stuff like that. Think I'd be good to go Sunday if I know the game plan and get the mental reps."

DeAndre Hopkins' status

Kingsbury said he never counts out Hopkins playing games. The Cardinals' lead receiver has missed only two in his entire career. 

That said, Kingsbury could not say with certainty Hopkins will get to suit up this week. 

"We're still working through that," Kingsbury said. "Not sure if he'll be ready to go this week or not. But with (Hopkins), you never know. He may grab his helmet and just run in there."

That's what Hopkins did Thursday, subbing himself in when he felt comfortable enough to do so. 

Moving on

The Cardinals have not had to bounce back from a loss this year.

Safety Budda Baker said the team preaches flushing games regardless of wins or losses, and that's what it is doing. 

"If you dwell on the past weeks, a lot of the times it doesn't end up well for the future or the present," Baker said. "So for us, we're just working on each and every day."

Veteran safety Chris Banjo said losses should bother the team, but in a way that motivates them going forward. Banjo believes that is the case. 

What to expect from San Francisco

The Cardinals face the 49ers for the second time this season Sunday.

Rookie quarterback Trey Lance started that game for the 49ers due to injury, and Jimmy Garoppolo will be back behind center this time. 

"Definitely knew we were going to get some QB run game, some different type of powers, which is definitely different with the QB run game because now there's an extra blocker in the formation," Baker said the Cardinals saw in Week 5. "Whereas Garoppolo, it's back to their normal run game, run game we're kind of accustomed to seeing."

Baker expects to see a good amount of 12 and 21 personnel with 49ers fullback Kyle Juszczyk involved. Tight end George Kittle could also return from injury this week.