Cardinals Respond to Andy Reid's Claims Loose Turf Caused Chiefs' Injuries

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 14, 2022

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The Arizona Cardinals defended State Farm Stadium after Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said the loose turf was a contributing factor to cornerback Trent McDuffie's hamstring injury and kicker Harrison Butker's ankle injury in Sunday's game.

"The entire field was replaced on Monday, August 22nd—the day after the last home preseason game vs. Baltimore—so it had it almost three full weeks before the Week 1 game vs. Kansas City," Cardinals spokesperson Mark Dalton told Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk. "That's more than enough time for the Tifway Bermuda 419 hybrid sod to take root, especially in 109 degrees and abundant sunshine."

Dalton also pointed to the stadium's track record.

"The field at State Farm Stadium is routinely ranked among the best—if not the best—among NFL players, including in surveys conducted by the NFLPA," he added. "Like all fields, the surface at State Farm Stadium undergoes the NFL's required testing and certification process both before and after games. Sunday it not only met but exceeded those standards."

The response came after Reid told reporters the turf was "a little bit loose" and "part of the Butker injury and McDuffie injury ... The turf picked up, and I would tell you that that did have something to do with it. If it didn't, I would tell you that, too. So it's not an excuse by any means, but I mean, you all can see it. Watch the tape."

Kansas City placed McDuffie on injured reserve, which means he will miss the next four games.

It is a difficult blow because the Chiefs face AFC West rivals in the Los Angeles Chargers and Las Vegas Raiders during the next four contests. They also play Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during that stretch, meaning the defense will be tested.

Butker's injury was a story within the game, as Kansas City turned to safety Justin Reid to handle kicking duties after he exited.

Reid made one of the two extra points he attempted during the 44-21 victory.

This season's Super Bowl will be at State Farm Stadium, so any potential turf issues will be magnified as the season progresses. Yet the Cardinals feel it was up to standards for the Week 1 game.


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