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Archive for Monday, September 11, 2000

McNair, Elam injured

September 11, 2000

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Tennessee quarterback Steve McNair and Denver kicker Jason Elam were injured by hard hits in NFL games Sunday.

McNair was taken to a hospital for tests after he injured his chest on a hit by Kansas City defensive end Duane Clemons.

Elam, who shares the NFL record with a 63-yard field goal, hurt his lower back trying to make a tackle during Darrick Vaughn's 100-yard kickoff return for Atlanta late in the second quarter.

McNair, hit repeatedly by the Chiefs, was scrambling on a third-and-12 play in the fourth quarter when he was knocked to the ground by Clemons. McNair walked off the field, then laid down on the ground for several minutes.

McNair was helped to the bench, where he sat for a couple of more minutes before he was carted off for X-rays, which were inconclusive. McNair was taken to Baptist Hospital for further tests as a precaution.

"He actually took a helmet to the chest," Titans coach Jeff Fisher said. "He was having troubles taking deep breaths."

Neil O'Donnell replaced McNair and rallied the Titans from a 14-7 deficit to a 17-14 overtime victory. O'Donnell went 4-1 filling in while McNair recuperated from back surgery last season.

"Steve's a tough guy, and he'll bounce back from it," O'Donnell said. "We just have to wait and see. I've been trying to teach him for two years how to slide."

Falcons safety Johndale Carty sent Elam flying with a hard block near the sideline, and Elam had to be helped from the field. He was unable to put any weight on his right leg.

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