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Colts RB Nyheim Hines has a concussion after big hit in Thursday night game, team says

Nyheim Hines #21 of the Indianapolis Colts is helped to his feet by #79 after being hit during a game against the Denver Broncos at Empower Field At Mile High on October 06, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Tafoya/Getty Images)

(CNN) — Indianapolis Colts running back Nyheim Hines was ruled out for the rest of Thursday’s game against the Denver Broncos and has a concussion, according to Colts head coach Frank Reich in his postgame press conference.

The hit took place during the first quarter when Colts quarterback Matt Ryan completed a pass to Hines for a 5-yard gain. After he was tackled, Hines had trouble getting back to his feet.

Video from the broadcast shows Hines getting hit in the back by another player and then hitting the turf. He was then seen on his feet and stumbling. Whistles were blown by referees to stop play, and Hines was then helped off the field.

CNN has reached out to the Colts for further information.

The incident with Hines comes as the NFL is facing increasing scrutiny of its concussion protocol after Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa had to be taken off the field on a backboard and stretcher during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals on September 29. The 24-year-old quarterback was sacked in the second quarter and laid motionless on the field for several minutes.

Video showed Tagovailoa’s forearms were flexed and his fingers contorted — a sign that CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta, a neurosurgeon, said is a “fencing response” and can be linked to a brain injury.

Just four days prior in a game against the Buffalo Bills, Tagovailoa was knocked out of the game briefly in the second quarter after a hit by Bills linebacker Matt Milano forced the back of the Dolphins QB’s helmet to hit the turf. Tagovailoa stumbled as he stood up and was taken to the locker room for a concussion check. Milano was flagged for a roughing the passer penalty.

The Dolphins initially announced Tagovailoa was questionable to return to the game with a head injury, but he came back out onto the field in the third quarter and finished the game, throwing for 186 yards and a touchdown.

An investigation is now underway into the handling of Tagovailoa’s apparent head injury, while the unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant who was involved in the quarterback’s first concussion evaluation is reportedly no longer working with the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA).