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Ryan Shazier carted off field with scary injury in Steelers’ win over Bengals

Shazier was carted off the field and taken to a hospital for evaluation after suffering a scary back injury in the first quarter.

Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier (50) is

Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier (50) is carted off the field after an apparent injury in the first half of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Monday, Dec. 4, 2017, in Cincinnati. Photo Credit: AP / Frank Victores

CINCINNATI — Chris Boswell kicked a field goal on the final play shortly after Antonio Brown caught a 6-yard touchdown pass — taking a hit to the head while landing in the end zone — and the Pittsburgh Steelers pulled off another improbable comeback against the Cincinnati Bengals, rallying for a 23-20 victory Monday night.

Down 17-0 early, the Steelers (10-2) extended their best start since 2004 in a physical game with a couple frightening injuries. Brown’s touchdown tied it at 20 with 3:51 to go, setting up Boswell’s 38-yard field goal, his second straight winner in the closing seconds.

The Bengals (5-7) simply can’t find a way to beat their Ohio River rival, not even after getting off to the big early lead. They’ve dropped six straight against Pittsburgh, including the Steelers’ 18-16 playoff win at Paul Brown Stadium that included another Bengals meltdown.

Pittsburgh lost leading tackler Ryan Shazier to a back injury in the first quarter. The linebacker was taken off the field on a cart and taken to a hospital for evaluation.

Shazier tackled receiver Josh Malone in the legs, fell to the ground and grabbed the middle of his back. The 25-year-old was strapped to a backboard and taken off. He was moving his arms on the field.

The Steelers said Shazier was going to a hospital for evaluation and wouldn’t return to the game.

It’s a significant setback for one of the NFL’s top defenses. The Pro Bowler from Ohio State leads the team in tackles and has three interceptions.

Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict was carted off in the fourth quarter after JuJu Smith-Schuster leveled him with a high hit, then taunted him by walking over him.

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