Rashad Johnson DB ARI 2 Months

The Cardinals' website projects Rashad Johnson as the team's Week 1 starter at free safety.

It's the latest sign Tyrann Mathieu (ACL/LCL surgery) won't be ready for Week 1. Coach Bruce Arians recently called October 1 his "target" date for Mathieu. Cardinals.com projects first-round pick Deone Bucannon to start at strong safety. Leaning on aging John Abraham (36) and Darnell Dockett (33) for pass rush, and weak at safety, Arizona's defense is quietly a 2014 concern after losing Karlos Dansby in free agency and Daryl Washington to suspension.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI 9 Months

Cardinals FS Rashad Johnson suffered a high ankle sprain in Week 15 against the Titans.

It's a concern for Arizona's backend because it just lost Tyrann Mathieu to a double-knee-ligament tear. Johnson can now be considered out indefinitely. If he can't start in Week 16 at Seattle -- and we certainly suspect he won't -- the Cardinals would turn to undrafted rookie Tony Jefferson at free safety.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI 11 Months

Cardinals S Rashad Johnson (finger) has been cleared to play in Week 5.

Johnson missed Week 4 after losing the top part of his index finger. He'll likely be Arizona's No. 3 safety behind Tyrann Mathieu and Yeremiah Bell.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI 11 Months

Cardinals declared S Rashad Johnson, RB Ryan Williams, NT Dan Williams, OT Bobby Massie, QB Ryan Lindley, LB Kevin Minter and OG Earl Watford inactive for Week 4 against the Bucs.

Johnson was thought to be on track to play after injuring his finger in last week's loss, but couldn't get final clearance. Impressive rookie Tyrann Mathieu is starting in his place. Ryan Williams has yet to be active this season. Dan Williams is tending to a personal matter.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI 11 Months

Cardinals FS Rashad Johnson (finger) expects to play in Week 4.

Johnson underwent finger surgery last week and is officially listed as questionable. The Cardinals have yet to clear him for Sunday's game, but he's expected to be available on a limited basis."I think he can play in a backup role," coach Bruce Arians said. "He definitely can do some things for us."

Rashad Johnson DB ARI 11 Months

Cardinals FS Rashad Johnson underwent finger surgery Sunday night.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI Aug 13 '13

Cardinals FS Rashad Johnson has been diagnosed with a sprained ankle and MCL.

It creates an opening for rookie Tyrann Mathieu, who will start this weekend's game against Dallas. The story of Cardinals camp thus far, we wouldn't rule out the Honey Badger taking Johnson's starting job for good.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI Mar 11 '13

Cardinals re-signed S Rashad Johnson to a three-year contract.

Johnson was drawing some good free-agent buzz over the last couple of weeks, but the Cardinals have always considered re-signing him a top priority. He could be in line to start at strong safety after Adrian Wilson's release, but recent reports have the Cardinals chasing a top free-agent safety. Either way, Johnson is strong on special teams.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI Mar 09 '13

The Eagles "had some interest" in free agent S Rashad Johnson.

Johnson may not be available much longer. The Cardinals are trying "very hard" to lock him up after releasing Adrian Wilson on Friday. Johnson will likely head back to the desert, but a team could always swoop him and woo him away.

Rashad Johnson DB ARI Mar 08 '13

The Cardinals and free agent S Rashad Johnson are engaged in contract talks.

Working on keeping Johnson has been one of Arizona's top priorities, and there is mutual interest. After SS Adrian Wilson's release on Friday, Johnson has a clear path to a starting job with the Cardinals. There's reason to believe the two sides will work something out before free agency opens.