Santonio Holmes will miss the rest of this season with an injured left foot, leaving the struggling New York Jets without their top offensive playmaker.
The Jets announced Wednesday that Holmes, who will require surgery, was placed on season-ending injured reserve. The team signed free agent wide receiver Jason Hill to help replace him.
"Obviously, that's a big loss for us," coach Rex Ryan said. "Santonio's one of the top receivers in the game, and it is a big loss."
The news came just over a week after star cornerback Darrelle Revis was likely lost for the season with a torn ligament in his left knee.
Holmes went down on the first play of the fourth quarter Sunday after catching a short pass. X-rays on the foot were negative, but the MRI exam results were sent to a foot specialist in North Carolina and the Jets' worst fears were confirmed.
Ryan confirmed that it is a Lisfranc injury, which usually involves the tearing of the ligament that holds the first two toes in the foot together. Recovery time depends on whether there is a dislocation or fracture, and whether surgery — including screws inserted — is needed.
Oakland wide receiver Jacoby Ford is out for the year with a similar injury, while Houston quarterback Matt Schaub and Raiders running back Darren McFadden are back after missing time last season with Lisfranc injuries. Other players have also rebounded from it, including Michael Strahan, Brian Westbrook and Ronnie Brown.
"He's going to be back," Ryan said of Holmes. "He'll have a full recovery."
Holmes leads the Jets with 20 catches for 272 yards and a touchdown this season. He and Sanchez had their best game together since 2010 two weeks ago at Miami, when Holmes caught nine passes for 147 yards.
"Obviously it's something that we wish didn't happen to one of your best players," Ryan said. "But that's, unfortunately, part of this business."
Hill was a third-round draft pick of San Francisco in 2007, but was waived by the 49ers in 2010 and claimed off waivers by Jacksonville, where he played the last two seasons. The speedy receiver spent the preseason with Denver before being released in August. He has 76 receptions for 1,028 yards and eight touchdowns in parts of five NFL seasons.