The Pro Bowl receiver Dez Bryant is dealing with a knee injury that sidelined him in Week 4, and is likely to continue to sideline him in Week 5, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
#Cowboys WR Dez Bryant is described as unlikely to play Sunday, source said, though he'll try to test his knee tomorrow in practice.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 6, 2016
As Rapoport alluded to, Bryant still has one day of practice left to at least test the knee in a manner resembling game-like activities, but he’s been unable to practice this week.
Bryant suffered a knee injury during the Cowboys' Week 3 win over the Bears, which looked like nothing at the time as he returned and finished that game. It was later revealed Bryant suffered a hairline fracture in his knee.
Anytime the word 'fracture' comes up it is scary, so it’s not a surprise seeing him potentially miss two games because of it. Dallas needs him more when the playoffs are nearing, not necessarily in Week 5 of the regular season.
This will still be a big loss for Dallas. In three games this season, Bryant has caught 11 passes for 150 yards and one touchdown. From 2012-14, Bryant racked up 273 catches for 3,935 yards and 41 touchdowns.
If he’s out, guys like Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley and Brice Butler will be getting more targets at wide receiver. Jason Witten also figures to get more targets as the veteran tight end is still playing at a Pro Bowl level.
Still, this will make life much easier for the Bengals defense, though Adam Jones, Dre Kirkpatrick and Darqueze Dennard have been playing well this season. It sounds like the Bengals will avoid facing Bryant this time around.
It is worth pointing out that Bryant did not practice last week, and while not playing at San Francisco was a foregone conclusion for the Cowboys wide receiver, the team still listed him as questionable on the final injury report, so they may do the same this week.