The New Orleans Saints will be without first-round pick Trevor Penning for at least a month. The team placed the rookie offensive tackle on injured reserve Thursday after tearing a ligament in his foot against the Chargers in the Saints’ preseason finale. Penning played in 10 snaps on Sunday before getting injured. He appeared in the team’s medical tent before being given a wagon ride in the locker room.
Penning is eligible to return for the Saints’ Week 5 home game against the Seahawks, but injury should sideline him for a longer period. New Orleans is also struggling with an injury to James Hurst, who was the team’s scheduled starting left tackle. Hurts injured his foot during training camp, but Saints head coach Dennis Allen says he expects the 30-year-old veteran to return “as soon as possible.”
The Saints have no other left tackle currently on the active roster without Penning and Hurts. Landon Young and Lewis Kidd are currently behind starter Ryan Ramczyk on the depth chart at right tackle. Nate Solder and Eric Fisher are among the most notable free agents at left tackle should New Orleans explore outside options ahead of their Week 1 game against the Falcons.
The 19th overall pick in the April draft, Penning was the only offensive lineman to be a finalist for the 2021 Walter Payton Award, given annually to college football’s offensive player of the year. Known for his fiery attitude, Penning was excused from practice early last month after he got into an altercation with a defensive teammate.