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Baltimore Ravens second year running back J.K. Dobbins will miss the 2021 National Football League season with a torn ligament in his left knee, the US media reported Sunday.
Dobbins was hurt on the opening drive of Saturday's final pre-season exhibition game against the Washington Football Team.
He was hit by multiple defenders after catching a pass and his left leg bent backwards, and US broadcaster ESPN reported an MRI confirmed he had a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
As a rookie last season, the second-round pick in 2020 ran for 805 yards and nine touchdowns in 15 games. He also caught 18 passes for 120 yards.
He averaged 6.0 yards per carry, the second-highest by a rookie over the past two decades in the NFL. Former Chicago Bears great Gale Sayers averaged 5.2 yards per carry in his 1965 rookie season and averaged over six yards just once (6.2, 1968) in his hall of fame career.
Dobbins is expected to be replaced as the starting running back by Gus Edwards when the Ravens open the season against the Las Vegas Raiders on September 13.
Elsewhere, Minnesota Vikings starting tight end Irv Smith needs knee surgery and will miss the start of the season, NFL Network reported. Smith has a meniscus injury.
Smith, 23, caught 30 passes for 365 yards and five touchdowns in 13 games last season. Minnesota opens the regular season on September 12 against the host Cincinnati Bengals.
Indianapolis Colts coach Frank Reich confirmed Sunday that wide receiver T.Y. Hilton is likely to miss some games with a neck injury.
"He was experiencing some discomfort during the trip to Detroit," Reich told reporters. "So we took scans, it was a disc issue, so that's a complicated issue.
"He will miss some games, we don't know exactly how many. We're optimistic it's not season-ending."