"We'll see a time frame on his rehab, but it got to a point where we felt like this was the best thing to do," head coach Sean Payton said after practice Thursday. "It will be a week-by-week thing based on what they're telling me from a medical standpoint. Hopefully it's sooner than later that we have him back."
The news was better regarding running back Reggie Bush, who returned to action after not practicing a day earlier because of a sore left knee.
"He took a limited amount of the (practice snaps) and was feeling better," Payton said.
Two other starters missed practice altogether: defensive end Charles Grant (ankle) and linebacker Scott Shanle (hamstring).
Grant, a sixth-year pro who has yet to miss a game, said he was not sure he'd be able to play against St. Louis. He struggled to play more than a few snaps last Sunday against Jacksonville, while Shanle sat out that game.
Center Jeff Faine, who missed the past two games with a left pectoral strain, practiced fully and expects to start Sunday.
Young began to have problems with his knee a couple weeks ago. It was drained the week before the Saints' victory at San Francisco, in which Young played and had his third sack in as many games.
It was drained again before last weekend's game, which Young missed. He was admitted for surgery on Wednesday, Payton said.
"Last week at Friday's practice he was probable and then Friday night when he got home and Saturday at the hotel" it flared up, Payton said. "The feeling by not only our doctors, but his doctors in the second opinion, everyone involved, is 'Let's go ahead and get this done now and get him back healthy so we don't keep putting a Band-Aid on it.'"
Payton called the procedure a "cleanup."
"We'll have him back, the question is how quickly," the coach said. "He's done pretty well when he's rehabbed to get back."
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press