49ers first-round pick Reuben Foster carted off with injury in first quarter

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Reuben Foster was carted off with an ankle injury in his debut. (AP)

The San Francisco 49ers looked brilliant for taking Reuben Foster at the end of the first round after the inside linebacker from Alabama dominated in training camp and the preseason.

Then Foster was carted off less than a quarter into his NFL debut.

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Foster was carted off the field with an ankle injury late in the first quarter against the Carolina Panthers. A big part of the enthusiasm for the rebuilding 49ers was wrapped up in young players like Solomon Thomas and Foster, so seeing Foster leave on a cart just after the season kicked off was a stomach punch. Fortunately for the 49ers Foster was able to walk back to the sideline, albeit with a significant limp as his ankle was wrapped up.

Foster already answered questions about the health of his shoulder, which was one reason Foster slipped in the draft. Now the 49ers have to worry about a different health concern with their exciting young linebacker.

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdown.corner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!