Bernard Pierce Leaves Game For Concussion Evaluation

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Running back Bernard Pierce left Saturday's game against the Washington Redskins early to be evaluated under the NFL's concussion protocol.

Pierce was shaken up after a big hit to the head by Washington safety Brandon Merriweather, who broke through the line of scrimmage untouched and tackled  Pierce in the backfield for a loss. Pierce took his time to get back to his feet after the hit, and then the Ravens' medical staff tended to him on the field.

Pierce walked off the field under his own power and into the locker room, and did not return to the game. The severity of his injury is unknown at this point. 

"We'll have to see; I'm not sure were he's at right now," Head Coach John Harbaugh said after the game.

Any kind of injury to Pierce is significant for Baltimore as the Ravens will already be without top running back Ray Rice for the first two games of the season because of a suspension. Pierce is expected start in Rice's absence and get the bulk of the carries.

When Pierce left the game, the Ravens turned to rookie Lorenzo Taliaferro and veteran Justin Forsett. Rice suited up, did not take any snaps as the Ravens simulate what the first two games will be like without him.

No injuries were announced other than Pierce, and Harbaugh indicated that there were no other major concerns.

"I'm sure there will be some bumps and bruises that we'll look at," Harbaugh said.

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