Cowboys' Bryant questionable vs SF, remorseful for absence
FRISCO, Texas (AP) Dez Bryant is questionable for Dallas' game against San Francisco, and remorseful about going AWOL on the Cowboys early in the week over fear about his knee injury.
The 2014 All-Pro receiver didn't practice all week after sustaining a hairline fracture in a bone in his right knee in last week's win over Chicago. He was officially listed as questionable Friday.
Owner Jerry Jones said on his radio show Friday that an X-ray the night of the game revealed the hairline fracture, and Bryant missed a follow-up MRI on Monday and team meetings Tuesday because he didn't want to get some bad news.
Bryant missed seven games last season after breaking his right foot in the opener and also battled ankle and knee issues.
''Just really didn't want to know what the issue was,'' Bryant said. ''I wish I would have done a better job. Like we always do, learn from things and get better. Nobody lost any sleep. We're moving on to San Fran trying to continue to keep progressing in the season.''
Bryant was injured on a catch on the second play against the Bears when his leg bent awkwardly on the tackle. He returned in the first quarter and caught the first scoring pass of the season for the Cowboys in the fourth quarter of the 31-17 win.
While not declaring himself out Sunday, Bryant said he wanted to be cautious because he trusted his teammates to keep winning. Jones said it was a question of pain tolerance and not an issue of whether Bryant could damage the bone worse by playing.
The Cowboys (2-1) have won two straight games with rookie quarterback Dak Prescott, double the number of wins they had in 14 games without Tony Romo going back to 2013. Romo is out after breaking a bone in his back in a preseason game.
Dallas lost four straight games without Romo and Bryant early last season after the first of Romo's two broken left collarbones.
''The mentality we've been building since this offseason is tremendous, and I feel like any guy that steps in there if anyone goes down, going to step up and do his job,'' Bryant said. ''That's just something that we build around here.''
Jones defended Bryant while saying his decision to stay away from the team for two days was ''not the way we'd like to have done it ideally.''
''He's very genuine,'' Jones said. ''And that's why his teammates think of him as they do. There's probably understanding as to why he would be having kind of an emotional decision as to whether to face the music or not and getting the MRI. I'm sure he would kind of like to have it go away.''
Like Bryant, Pro Bowl left tackle Tyron Smith is listed as questionable after missing practice all week with a back problem. Smith's back tightened up late last week, causing him to miss the Chicago game.
Cornerback Orlando Scandrick, nursing injuries to both hamstrings, is questionable after being limited in practice all week. He missed the game against the Bears as well.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP-NFL
Follow Schuyler Dixon on Twitter at https://twitter.com/apschuyler