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Bolden out of hospital; Pats-Titans practices off

GREEN BAY, Wis. — New England Patriots rookie cornerback Isaiah Bolden was released from the hospital Sunday morning after absorbing a hit from a teammate that led to him being immobilized, placed on a stretcher and carted off the field in Saturday night’s preseason game against the Green Bay Packers.

The Patriots said in a statement that Bolden will travel home with the team on Sunday morning.

The injury led to the suspension of Saturday night’s game early in the fourth quarter. Bolden had “feeling in all his extremities”, according to the team, but remained at Aurora Bay Medical Center in Green Bay overnight for observation.

“We thank the medical staff at Aurora Bay Medical Center for their overnight evaluations, as well as the Patriots and Packers medical staffs for their immediate on-field response and care in transporting Isaiah,” the club said Sunday morning.

The Patriots had planned to fly to Tennessee on Sunday, where they were scheduled to hold two practices with the Tennessee Titans leading up to Friday’s preseason finale. The practices have been canceled by the Patriots “due to the circumstances surrounding the abrupt and unexpected ending” to Saturday’s game.

The Patriots now plan to practice at their team headquarters in Foxboro, Massachusetts, before traveling to Tennessee later in the week for the game.

“We’re all saying a prayer for Isaiah,” Patriots coach Bill Belichick said Saturday night. “Appreciate the way the league handled it. I think that was the right thing to do.”

With 10:29 remaining in the fourth quarter, referee John Hussey announced to the crowd at Lambeau Field: “At the agreement of both head coaches and team leadership, we have elected to suspend play for the evening. The game is officially over.”

Belichick said the injury put things in perspective, adding: “We’re all very fortunate.”

Packers coach Matt LaFleur called it “a very scary ending to the game” and said he agreed with the decision to call it.

The Patriots, who practiced with the Packers on Wednesday and Thursday, were leading 21-17 at the time.

Bolden was covering a slant pass toward the inside part of the field and collided with teammate Calvin Munson. He remained down on the ground, and as medical personnel arrived, the entire Patriots team ultimately gathered on the field and knelt nearby.

Packers rookie receiver Malik Heath, who caught the pass on the play, said he didn’t realize exactly what happened until the play was over. He then realized the injured player was Bolden, whom he knows from their college days. Heath is from Jackson, Mississippi, the same town where Bolden went to college at Jackson State.

“I know him, so I didn’t want to finish [the game],” Heath said. “I felt bad, too. It was a good thing we didn’t finish it. It was scary, too. That could’ve happened to me on the hit.” Captain Matthew Slater, the Patriots’ longest-tenured player, led players in a prayer. Slater was later seen speaking with Belichick and LaFleur on the field.

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