September 13, 2015 / 9:15 PM / in 2 years

Jets rookie hospitalized with apparent neck injury

Sep 13, 2015; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin (55) is carted off the field on a stretcher with team doctors during the second half against the Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) - New York Jets rookie Lorenzo Mauldin was taken to a local hospital after suffering a potentially serious head and neck injury on Sunday during the team's first game of the 2015 National Football League season.

The 22-year-old linebacker wound up at the bottom of a pile of players after sacking Cleveland quarterback Johnny Manziel to force a fumble, but when he got back to his feet following the fourth-quarter play he quickly collapsed to the field.

Trainers and medical staff rushed to Mauldin, who was taken off the field on a spinal board with his head and neck immobilized in a brace.

"I am very worried about him," Jets head coach Todd Bowles said after his team's 31-10 home victory.

Mauldin was the Jets' third-round pick out of the University of Louisville in this year's NFL Draft.

Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Larry Fine

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