Dallas Cowboys quarterback Troy Aikman left Sunday's NFC championship early in the second half after being kneed in the head, and was taken to a hospital for overnight observation.

Aikman was hit by defensive end Dennis Brown of the San Francisco 49ers with the Cowboys leading 28-7 on the first series of the third quarter. Aikman, already wearing a Super Bowl hat, was taken to Baylor Medical Center late in the fourth quarter of Dallas' 38-21 victory.Brown lunged toward Aikman and his knee knocked the quarterback flush on the helmet.

Aikman received smelling salts and oxygen. He spent about 10 minutes walking along the sidelines before going to the locker room. He was replaced by Bernie Kosar.

Aikman completed 14 of 18 passes for 177 yards and two touchdowns.