There's "a fear" that cornerback Darqueze Dennard suffered a significant shoulder injury during Cincinnati's 34-31 loss to the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday Night.; it may be season-ending. Dennard appeared to have suffered the injury with 5:37 remaining in the third while covering wide receiver John Brown, who secured an 18-yard touchdown on the play.
Dennard will be getting an MRI to determine the extent of the injury, which NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport is at least a dislocated shoulder.
#Bengals bracing for a serious injury to CB Darqueze Dennard, who dislocated his shoulder vs. AZ. MRI today, but belief is there was a tear— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 23, 2015
Cincinnati's secondary, already shorthanded with Adam Jones (foot) out and Reggie Nelson spending time on the sidelines with his own ailments, needed rookie Josh Shaw, with a season-high 18 defensive snaps on Sunday and Chris Lewis-Harris to contribute.
This coincides with cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, who submitted his worst performance of the season according to Pro Football Focus (-4.0 grade and a season-worst 118.8 opposing passer rating). In addition, Pro Football Focus grades Kirkpatrick as the second-worst cornerback in the NFL (-20 overall) and has missed a team-high 13 tackles. Kirkpatrick also left the game for a few plays with a chest injury.
That being said, whether it's depth chart issues or injuries, Dennard really hasn't made an impact since entering the league as Cincinnati's first-round pick in 2014. A potentially season-ending injury only pronounces the difficulty for Dennard to earn a significantly higher contributing role.