Emmitt Smith out indefinitely with fractured shoulder blade

Updated: October 6, 2003, 6:09 PM ET

TEMPE, Arizona - It was indeed a painful homecoming for Emmitt Smith, who learned on Monday that he has a fractured left shoulder blade and will be sidelined indefinitely.

Arizona Cardinals coach Dave McGinnis did not give a timetable for Smith's return, only saying that he expected to be without his leading rusher for "weeks."

Making his return to the place where he spent 13 years and set the NFL's all-time rushing record, Smith was stuffed for minus-1 yard on six carries by the Dallas Cowboys before leaving Sunday's game in the second quarter with what was originally diagnosed as a sprained AC joint in his left shoulder.

The 34-year-old Smith rushed for 17,162 yards and 153 touchdowns in 13 glorious years with the Cowboys, winning three Super Bowl titles. Last October 27, Smith passed Walter Payton (16,726) on the NFL's all-time rushing list, but his streak of 11 straight 1,000-yard seasons also came to an end in 2002, when he rushed for 975 yards and five touchdowns, averaging 3.8 yards per carry.

Not part of Bill Parcells' rebuilding program in Dallas, Smith was surrounded by a bevy of defenders each time he took a handoff from Jeff Blake on Sunday and caught just two passes for two yards. Hard-hitting safety Roy Williams administered the knockout blow, leveling Smith with a hit to the left shoulder early in the second quarter.

The decision to jettison Smith has proved to be the right one for the Cowboys, who have a three-game winning streak for the first time since they started 3-0 in 1999. Meanwhile, Smith has produced 192 yards on 65 carries for the Cardinals, an average of just under 3.0 yards per carry.

This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index