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Saints’ MichaelLewis Hospitalized

July 28, 2003

NEW ORLEANS (AP) _ Saints kick returner Michael Lewis was hospitalized Monday after colliding with a teammate during a drill.

Lewis, who broke the NFL record for combined kickoff and punt return yardage last season, was taken off the field on a stretcher after running into safety Mel Mitchell.

``It was a precaution,″ trainer Scottie Patton said. ``With the way the injury occurred, we decided to transport for further evaluation.″

Although Lewis was in some pain, the injury was not thought to be serious.

``He is going to be fine,″ coach Jim Haslett said. ``We are just going to have to see how he is. He will probably have a couple of days off.″

Lewis, who never played college football, was working as a beer truck delivery man when he earned a spot on the Saints’ practice squad in 2000 because of his speed. He overcame problems catching the football and earned a trip to the Pro Bowl last year.

He became the first Saints player to return a punt and a kickoff for a touchdown in the same game. Lewis also finished third on the team with 18 tackles on coverage units and forced a fumble.

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