ESPN reports that the Dallas Cowboys’ medical staff will work to create a protective contraption that will protect the finger from further damage while not preventing the team’s biggest weapon from catching the ball.
Apparently, though, the team is still awaiting final word from the doctor, who could determine it is mandatory for Bryant to have surgery, which would end his season, according to the network.
Owner Jerry Jones said this week that the decision would be left up to Bryant as to if he wanted to play with the fracture or undergo surgery that would sideline him the remainder of the year.
Bryant will be limited in practice on Thursday, according to an ESPN source, and will catch a few passes to see how he feels. During practice, he likely will wear a protective, taped-up splint, similar to what he wore the remainder of the Dallas win at Cincinnati. After injuring the finger, Bryant returned to the game and caught an important touchdown in the Cowboys’ comeback win.
The hand specialist has told Bryant and the Cowboys that a re-injury to the finger could cause permanent stiffness and would impact his ability to catch passes in the future.
“One of the things that we know about Dez is that he’s a tough guy and he loves playing football,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said Wednesday morning. “He’s going to give himself and our team every chance possible to play in (Sunday’s game) and continue to play this season.
“We just need to get more medical information about how to handle the situation right now, the best way to handle it for now and for the future.”
In the last month, Bryant has emerged as a lethal receiver. He caught 30 passes for 438 yards with six touchdowns over that stretch and had seven touchdowns in the last five games. Bryant ranks 10th in the NFL in receiving yards (1,028) this season and is tied for third with nine touchdowns.