Saints’ Dez Bryant hurt, calls in­jury the ‘ul­ti­mate test’

The Mercury (Pottstown, PA) - - SPORTS - By Brett Mar­tel

METAIRIE, LA. » Dez Bryant’s ten­ure with the Saints may have been short-lived.

In just his sec­ond prac­tice with New Or­leans, the newly ac­quired wide re­ceiver in­di­cated in so­cial me­dia posts Fri­day that he has had a sig­nif­i­cant set­back.

The team’s in­jury re­port listed Bryant as ques­tion­able for Sun­day’s game in Cincin­nati with an an­kle in­jury, but a per­son fa­mil­iar with the sit­u­a­tion said the team is still await­ing the re­sults of a doc­tor’s ex­am­i­na­tion of Bryant.

The per­son spoke to The As­so­ci­ated Press on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause the team has not an­nounced any de­tails of Bryant’s med­i­cal exam.

Bryant has in­di­cated on so­cial me­dia that the in­jury will be chal­leng­ing to over­come, writ­ing on his ver­i­fied Twit­ter ac­count, “Things was just start­ing to heat up for me ... I won’t ques­tion the man up­stairs ... this is the ul­ti­mate test.. thank you every­one for the prayers.”

The 30-year-old signed with the Saints on Wed­nes­day fol­low­ing a work­out in New Or­leans a day ear­lier . After his first prac­tice on Thurs­day, he ex­pressed an ea­ger­ness to play with NFL all-time passer Drew Brees, and help a club that looks like a Su­per Bowl con­tender. The surg­ing Saints have won seven straight and last Sun­day knocked off the pre­vi­ously un­beaten Los An­ge­les Rams.

Bryant spent his first eight NFL sea­sons with Dal­las and in 2017 caught 69 passes for 838 yards and six touch­downs, in­clud­ing a 50-yard scor­ing play, for the Cowboys.

Last sea­son was Bryant’s best since he caught 88 passes for 1,320 yards and 16 TDs in 2014, which at the time was his third con­sec­u­tive sea­son with at least 1,200 yards re­ceiv­ing. He signed his last Cowboys con­tract right after that, but has not ap­proached that level of pro­duc­tion since — a cen­tral rea­son Dal­las re­leased him in April with two years left on his five-year, $70 mil­lion con­tract.

If Bryant is un­able to play this sea­son, the Saints could look to sign an­other re­ceiver soon.

Bills’ McCoy breaks si­lence

OR­CHARD PARK, N.Y. » Buf­falo Bills run­ning back LeSean McCoy ended his near two-week si­lence by say­ing he wanted to keep his frus­tra­tions to him­self in what’s been a mis­er­able sea­son.

“I was just up­set how ev­ery­thing’s been go­ing, 2-7,” McCoy said Fri­day, re­fer­ring to the Bills’ record. “That’s frus­trat­ing. I want to win games, so I just kind of took that ap­proach. Just kind of up­set. But my mind­set is just try to get bet­ter.”

The com­ments were the first from McCoy since a 25-6 loss against New Eng­land on Oct. 29. He’s ducked in­ter­view re­quests ever since, in­clud­ing can­cel­ing his weekly news con­fer­ences each of the past two Wed­nes­days after com­bin­ing for 23 yards rush­ing on 22 car­ries over two games.

“There’s plays to be made and we’re not mak­ing them. Got to play smarter. Got to play bet­ter. Sim­ple as that,” McCoy said. “Can’t com­plain or pout about it. Just got to find ways to win games and make it hap­pen.”

What both­ers him even more is that at 30, McCoy is be­gin­ning to re­al­ize he’s run­ning out of time to achieve var­i­ous ob­jec­tives. They in­clude win­ning a cham­pi­onship and es­tab­lish­ing him­self as one of the NFL’s premier run­ning backs by be­com­ing just the 17th player to reach 12,000 ca­reer yards rush­ing.

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