After suffering a concussion during Monday night’s game against the Chargers, linebacker John Abraham has left the Cardinals, possibly for good, reports Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter links). According to Schefter, Abraham is suffering from memory loss and has been for more than a year. Following his most recent concussion, the 36-year-old may not play in another NFL game.
Abraham, a Pro Bowler for Arizona last season, was late reporting to camp this year because he was reportedly in rehab after facing a DUI charge earlier in the offseason. There’s not necessarily a correlation between that incident and his reported memory loss, but the personal and health issues Abraham has faced within the last few weeks make it clear that football should be a secondary concern at the moment.
According to Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic (Twitter links), the Cardinals have received a roster exemption for Abraham, who will be replaced on the 53-man roster by Marcus Benard. The team will place Abraham on the reserve list, and he’ll have five days to return to the team, or else he won’t be eligible to play this season.
Although Abraham’s health should be the most important consideration, it’s worth noting that his absence is another significant blow for a Cardinals defense that already has lost Darnell Dockett to a season-ending injury, Daryl Washington to a year-long suspension, and Karlos Dansby in free agency.