Pats get CB Gay back, lose OG Neal; Faulk taken to locker room
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- New England Patriots cornerback Randall Gay returned to the Super Bowl in the second quarter after injuring his left arm early in the first quarter against the New York Giants on Sunday.
Gay was attempting a tackle on New York's Steve Smith when teammate Rodney Harrison knocked into him hard. Harrison made the tackle on Smith, who had an 8-yard catch on third-and-6 to keep an early drive by the Giants alive. Both Gay and Harrison were injured on the play and examined by trainers on the Patriots' sideline.
Harrison returned to the game after one play, but Gay was escorted off the field while he cradled his left arm.
Gay came back late in the first half and broke up a deep pass by Eli Manning to Smith with 2 minutes left.
Right guard Stephen Neal left the game midway through the second quarter after injuring a knee on Justin Tuck's sack of Tom Brady. Neal, who missed the Patriots' last meeting with the Giants in Week 17 because of a shoulder injury, was replaced by Russ Hochstein.
Kevin Faulk appeared to injure his left hamstring on a deep fourth-down incompletion by Brady to Jabar Gaffney in the end zone with 6:49 remaining in the third quarter. He returned early in the fourth quarter.
Faulk, one of the Patriots' most valuable offensive threats, was away from the play when he grabbed the back of his left leg and hopped over to the sideline. He then jogged into the locker room accompanied by a trainer.
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press