The Cowboys owner said Jones was unable to loosen his left knee after suffering what the team has initially diagnosed as a knee strain that would be re-evaluated, indicating the likelihood the second-year pro will have an MRI.
Felix Jones was hurt as he was tackled at the end of a 40-yard run in Dallas' 21-7 win against the Panthers on "Monday Night Football." It was the final carry of a performance in which the oft-injured breakaway back contributed 114 yards from scrimmage on just nine touches.
It also marked the second time in three games this season that Jones was too injured to finish. He suffered a bruised quadriceps in the season opener against Tampa Bay. Jones returned to the field to fake a reverse with the Cowboys lining Tashard Choice under center, and Jones appeared to limp through the play before returning to the sideline.
Jones made his first career NFL start in the game because Marion Barber was held out with a strained quad; coach Wade Phillips said Barber was close to being able to play. Barber's status becomes even more important with the uncertainty of Jones' availability as the Cowboys have a short week of preparation before playing on the road against an undefeated Denver Broncos team that has allowed only 16 points, fewest in the league.
While Barber is a former Pro Bowl player and Choice has proved capable as a spot starter, Jones is one of the few speed players that quarterback Tony Romo has on the field. Jones this season has 16 touches for 210 yards and a touchdown.
The 2008 first-round pick out of Arkansas missed all but three games of his rookie season with a toe injury that required surgery.
Ed Werder is a reporter for ESPN.