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Darrius Heyward-Bey hospitalized after neck injury

A physical contest between the Oakland Raiders and Pittsburgh Steelers slowed to a pause Sunday when Darrius Heyward-Bey was carted off the field seconds into the fourth quarter with a neck injury.

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Steelers safety Ryan Mundy delivered a violent shot to the Raiders wide receiver as he attempted to haul in a pass from quarterback Carson Palmer in the end zone. Why no flag was thrown remains a mystery. Mundy made clear contact to Heyward-Bey's head.

Heyward-Bey crumpled to the ground and was knocked unconscious on the play. The Raiders' medical staff huddled around him before he eventually was carted away. As he was taken from the field, Heyward-Bey raised his hand to the home crowd before being transported to a local hospital.

"It's tough," Mundy said, via The Associated Press, of watching Heyward-Bey being carted off the field. "He has a job just like I have a job. Anytime that he's not able to perform his job because of injury, that's tough as a player. We don't play like that. We don't try to injury people or anything like that. We understand this is people's livelihood. We take that serious."

Palmer said Heyward-Bey is doing well, according to Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle. The Raiders later announced that Heyward-Bey was in stable condition and would stay in the hospital overnight for observation.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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