Cooper fighting for playing time in Arizona; Barth is perfect for Tampa

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Arizona Cardinals third-year offensive lineman Jonathan Cooper did not get the start this week against the St. Louis Rams, but the former Hoggard High School standout is back to full strength after dealing with injuries over the past month.

Jonathan Cooper. Photo courtesy- Arizona Cardinals.
Jonathan Cooper. Photo courtesy- Arizona Cardinals.

Cooper served as the starting right guard through week 10 of this season before injuring his knee during the game against Seattle on Nov. 15. He returned to practice at full strength for the first time on Wednesday.  Ted Larsen started a right guard for the Cardinals in the 27-3 victory on Sunday.

The former first round draft pick has dealt with the injury bug since first entering the league in 2013. Cooper missed his entire rookie year after breaking his leg during the final preseason game. He spent most of last season getting over the mental hurdles associated with a big injury and got back into the starting lineup to start this year. He played 10 games at right yard before being sidelined.

Arizona currently stands atop the NFC West at 10-2 overall.

Barth remains consistent in the kicking game for Tampa

Connor Barth connected on his only field goal of the afternoon from 23 yards out as Tampa Bay grabbed a 23-19 victory over Atlanta Falcons thanks to a late touchdown pass by Jameis Winston.

Barth made the score 16-12 in favor of the Buccaneers following his three-point kick to cap a six-play drive with 1:37 to go in the third quarter. He also hit both extra point attempts in the win.

Barth is 18 of 21 so far this season, connecting on 2 of 3 kicks in last week’s 25-12 loss to Indianapolis Colts.

With the win, Tampa Bay kept their playoff hopes alive to improve to 6-6 overall.