Receiver injures left knee for second time in year

New Orleans Saints officials confirmed Tuesday what they have suspected for several days, announcing that rookie wide receiver Chase Lyman sustained a potential season-ending knee injury during a minicamp practice last week.

A fourth-round choice, and the 118th player selected overall, Lyman tore the anterior cruciate ligament of his left knee during a non-contact drill. It is the second time in just seven months that Lyman has torn the ACL in his left knee, and it continues a stretch of serious injuries that limited the former University of California star to just eight starts during his college career.

Lyman is the second rookie to suffer a torn anterior cruciate ligament in minicamp action. Buffalo Bills tight end Kevin Everett, a third-round choice, also tore the ACL in his left knee during the team's minicamp two weeks ago.

A date for Lyman's surgery has not yet been set and the Saints have not determined how they will treat his status. Although the rehabilitation for ACL injuries has been reduced in recent years, with some players returning after just six months of treatment, Lyman could still miss his entire rookie campaign.

Blessed with impressive size (6-feet-2 5/8, 217 pounds) and good speed (4.51 in the 40), Lyman might have provided the Saints with a more physical dimension at wide receiver. But lack of durability has always been as issue for him and having to now rehabilitate the same knee for the second time since last October will not be an easy chore.

In college, Lyman was sidelined at various times by ankle, groin, hamstring, hip and knee injuries, and by appendicitis. He underwent an appendectomy in 2001 and missed the '02 season with a torn hamstring, an injury that earned him a medical redshirt. Lyman played the first four games of the 2004 season, registering 14 receptions for 414 yards and five touchdowns, before the knee injury sidelined him for the balance of the year.

For his career, Lyman had 54 catches for 1,089 yards and nine touchdowns, appearing in 34 games.

Len Pasquarelli is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com. To check out Len's chat archive, click hereInsider.