Steve Smith leaves, then returns

Updated: September 16, 2012, 3:20 PM ET
By Pat Yasinskas | ESPN.com

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Carolina Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith was carted off the field with an apparent leg injury but returned to the game in the third quarter Sunday against the New Orleans Saints.

Smith went down with 8:17 remaining in the quarter after getting tangled up with New Orleans cornerback Patrick Robinson, who was called for pass interference on the play.

Smith returned to the sideline with five minutes left in the quarter and re-entered the game.

Smith was dealing with a knee injury in the days leading into the game and was listed as questionable. It's not clear if the injury is to the same knee.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter