MIAMI -- Miami Dolphins tight end Dustin Keller will miss the entire season because of a right knee injury, a person familiar with the diagnosis said Sunday.
The person confirmed the extent of the injury on condition of anonymity because the Dolphins hadn't commented.
Keller was hurt in the second quarter of Saturday's exhibition game at Houston. His leg bent unnaturally when he was tackled by D.J. Swearinger on an incompletion, and he was carted off the field.
Keller signed a $4.25 million, one-year contract with the Dolphins in March after five seasons with the New York Jets. He had hoped to parlay a big season in 2013 into a multiyear deal.
His injury represents a significant setback for the Dolphins, who signed Keller to replace tight end Tony Fasano and help second-year quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Keller and Tannehill had clicked in training camp and connected on a 22-yard touchdown pass in the second exhibition game.
The injury leaves the Dolphins without an experienced tight end. Options to replace Keller include fourth-round draft pick Dion Sims, who has had a good camp, and Michael Egnew, who played in only two games last year after being drafted in the third round.
Keller has 17 career touchdown receptions, but he played in only eight games in 2012 because of hamstring and ankle injuries.