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Kenny Vaccaro carted off field

Saints safety Kenny Vaccaro was carted off the field with a lower leg injury in the first quarter. AP Photo/Mike McCarn

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- New Orleans Saints safety Kenny Vaccaro was carted off the field with a lower leg injury in the first quarter Sunday against the Carolina Panthers.

No specifics of the injury were immediately available. Vaccaro's left leg was bent back in a pile-up, and he was placed in an air cast on the field.

The standout rookie has been a big reason for the Saints' defensive success this year, playing a versatile role in pass coverage (often against top slot receivers).

The Saints do have good depth at the safety position, though. Veteran Roman Harper replaced Vaccaro in the lineup.