Two days after signing with the New Orleans Saints, receiver Dez Bryant sustained a potentially season-ending foot injury on the final play of practice on Friday, according to multiple reports.
Bryant had to be helped off the field, according to NFL Network, which also said that the Saints feared he had torn his Achilles’ tendon. He was scheduled to undergo magnetic resonance imaging, the network said, to determine the extent of the injury. A torn Achilles’ would sideline Bryant deep into next year.
The N.F.C. South-leading Saints added Bryant to their roster on Wednesday to bolster their receiving corps heading into the second half of the season. Their decision to sign Bryant, who spent his first eight seasons with the Dallas Cowboys before being released in April, seemed rooted more in improving their chances to advance far in the playoffs than in helping them get there.
The Saints are averaging 34.9 points per game, best in the N.F.C., behind a diverse offense led by quarterback Drew Brees, running backs Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram and receiver Michael Thomas.
Unlike in Dallas, Bryant, 30, was not going to be the focal point of the passing game in New Orleans. It figured that he would need time to learn Coach Sean Payton’s intricate offense. Once he gained comfort, Bryant would have been able to slide into a complementary role, perhaps in the red zone as a taller target for Brees.
Bryant, who practiced for the first time with New Orleans on Thursday, had been listed as questionable for the Saints’ game Sunday at Cincinnati. Now it appears he is unlikely to play at all for New Orleans, this season or next.