Dez Bryant won’t return to game action this week.
On Saturday the Dallas Cowboys downgraded the star receiver from doubtful to out for Sunday’s game against the New York Giants. He didn’t make the trip with the team to Newark, N.J., on Friday, but he flew in Saturday to join his teammates and lend support as they face an NFC East foe.
The news of Bryant missing his fifth consecutive game shouldn’t have come as much of a surprise, considering he didn’t practice in the week leading up to the game. Coach Jason Garrett has said that he would like Bryant to practice before returning to game action.
Executive vice president Stephen Jones hinted that Bryant wouldn’t play on his radio show Friday telling KRLD/105.3 FM The Fan: “We want to make sure we make the right call and know that we still have a long season ahead of us.”
Bryant, 26, worked on the side during practice over the week, rehabbing his fractured right foot. He has never practiced with new starting quarterback Matt Cassel, acquired in a Sept. 22 trade with the Buffalo Bills.
Bryant fractured the fifth metatarsal in his right foot during the season opener against the Giants. He had surgery, which included a bone graft, on Sept. 14.
The Cowboys gave a timeline of six to eight weeks for his return, and Sunday is just shy of the six-week mark.
Two weeks ago, Bryant traveled to Colorado for a procedure in which bone marrow stem cells from his hip were injected into his ankle to speed his recovery.
Nike, with the Cowboys’ consultation, fitted Bryant with a new right cleat designed to protect his surgically repaired foot.
While the Cowboys, who are on a three-game losing streak, need Bryant, they also want to make sure he is fully healed and in football shape. Bryant missed all of the off-season while seeking a new contract and missed much of training camp and all of the preseason games with a hamstring injury.