dead on feet


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dead on (one's) feet

1. Near to the point of collapse or losing consciousness (as due to exhaustion or injury) while still remaining on one's feet; just short of being asleep or unconscious. Doctors in training are expected to endure an unbelievable amount of stress and exhaustion. Surely it is counterproductive forcing them to attend each of their patients while they're dead on their feet.
2. All but or as good as defeated; still functioning, but past the point of usefulness or productivity. The company has managed to remain open, but truth be told, it's really been dead on its feet for the last year.
See also: dead, feet, on

dead on one's feet

 and dead on its feet
Fig. exhausted; worn out; no longer useful. Ann is so tired. She's really dead on her feet. He can't teach well anymore. He's dead on his feet. This inefficient company is dead on its feet.
See also: dead, feet, on