Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph left the game against Baltimore after suffering a concussion following a hit to the chin by Ravens safety Earl Thomas in the third quarter on Sunday.
Trailing 17-13 and facing third-and-11 at the Pittsburgh 12 midway through the third quarter, Rudolph lined up in the shotgun and dropped back to pass. The play broke down and Rudolph scrambled to his left, stepping up the field in the process. He flicked the ball to teammate James Washington just before the crown of Thomas' helmet hit Rudolph under the chin. Rudolph limply fell to the ground and laid there with his eyes closed while medical personnel rushed to attend to him. Rudolph woozily made his way off the field and to a nearby hospital for further evaluation.
"I was just flying to the ball like I normally do," said Thomas, who signed with Baltimore in the offseason after becoming a perennial Pro Bowler with Seattle. "I was asking the ref what happened and they said upstairs said that a part of my helmet kind of hit him in the chin, and that's what caused the flag. I still believe that it wasn't intentional on my part."
Rudolph eventually came to as trainers cut off his facemask. He needed to be helped off the field by his teammates because the cart used to treat seriously hurt players stalled. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin wasn't sure why the cart wasn't working.
"Ask somebody that is in charge of that," Tomlin said. "I don't drive carts and things of that nature."
Rudolph is the second Steelers quarterback to be injured this season. Starter Ben Roethlisberger is out for the season after surgery on his right elbow.
The scene of players on both sides going down to one knee while Rudolph was being treated was eerily similar to the on-field reaction in Cincinnati in December 2017 when Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier sustained a spinal injury. Shazier, currently on the Physically Unable to Perform list while he continues his rehab from spinal stabilization surgery, walked over to Rudolph and briefly comforted him as Rudolph made his way to the locker room for further treatment and examination as the crowd chanted "throw him out" at Thomas.
The New York Giants have lost another running back. Wayne Gallman, who was starting for the injured Saquon Barkley, was knocked out of the game against the Minnesota Vikings with a concussion.
Jon Hilliman, the Rutgers rookie who spent the first three weeks on the practice squad, replaced Gallman. He apparently was hurt at the end of an 11-yard run in the first quarter.
Barkley sustained a high sprain to his right ankle against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 15.
Broncos cornerback De'Vante Bausby was strapped to a backboard and taken off the field on a cart during the second quarter against the Chargers. He was injured when he collided with teammate Alexander Johnson while making a tackle on running back Austin Ekeler. Bausby was taken to a hospital and was reported to have movement in his arms and legs. Linebacker Justin Hollins suffered a knee injury during the second half.
Chargers center Mike Pouncey suffered a neck injury during the first half and did not return.
In other injury news:
Bills center Mitch Morse was taken to the locker room from the sideline by cart late in the first half at Tennessee. Jon Feliciano replaced him for the third quarter. Linebacker Matt Milano hurt a hamstring, and rookie right tackle Cody Ford and defensive end Trent Murphy both were evaluated for head injuries in the second half.
Titans cornerback Chris Milton hurt his calf and did not return.
Patriots wide receiver Phillip Dorsett (hamstring) did not play the second half against Washington. Redskins
cornerback Quinton Dunbar (stinger) left in the fourth quarter.
Jaguars tight end James O'Shaughnessy left in the third quarter with a knee injury and did not return against Carolina. Panthers linebacker Christian Miller and gunner Natrell Jameson left with ankle injuries and did not return.
Bears defensive tackle Akiem Hicks (elbow) left the game in the first half against Oakland and didn't return.
Eagles running back Darren Sproles left with a quad injury in the second half against the Jets.
Buccaneers right tackle Demar Dotson left with a hamstring injury against New Orleans. Saints receiver Tre'Quan Smith left with an ankle injury after also having missed the previous two games with an ankle problem.
Cardinals safety Charles Washington suffered a shoulder injury against Cincinnati. Bengals wide receiver Alex Erickson hit his facemask on the ground while being tackled after a catch in the second quarter and left with a concussion.
Green Bay center Corey Linsley didn't return after leaving in the first half to be evaluated for a concussion at Dallas. Packers safety Darnell Savage left with an ankle injury and didn't return. Cowboys right tackle La'el Collins, who played after being listed as questionable with a back issue, was taken out with an ankle injury in the second half.
Indianapolis cornerback Shak Taylor, who was just elevated to the active roster because of depth concerns in the defensive backfield, went down with a chest injury. He joined Kenny Moore II on the sideline after the starting cornerback left with a knee injury.
That makes five defensive backs out for Indianapolis. Starting safeties Malik Hooker (knee) and Clayton Geathers (concussions) and backup safety Rolan Milligan (knee) were inactive.
The Chiefs lost wide receiver Sammy Watkins to a sore hamstring and linebacker Anthony Hitchens to a groin injury. Both of them were questionable to return.