Cam Newton left Thursday night’s game early due to injury, and Panthers GM Marty Hurney said Friday the ninth-year quarterback suffered a sprained foot. Newton left Gillette Stadium in a walking boot.
The Panthers are “cautiously optimistic” Newton will be able to suit up in Week 1, David Newton of ESPN.com notes. While Hurney called the injury a “mild” sprain, it is officially a mid-foot sprain, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com notes (video link).
A first-quarter sack (Twitter link via SI.com’s Albert Breer) ended Newton’s night and shifted uncertainty surrounding the Carolina quarterback from his throwing shoulder to his left foot. This particular injury can linger. Although Newton has been incredibly durable throughout his career, this is certainly not ideal after the months of shoulder rehab the 30-year-old passer went through this year.
Newton’s troublesome throwing shoulder, which required another surgery in January, prompted the Panthers to hold him out of their first two preseason games. It may now come down to the wire for Week 1 because of this sprain. Newton has battled shoulder problems since 2017 and underwent left ankle surgery in 2014. He has only missed five games in his career.
Carolina featured an underwhelming contingent of backups behind Newton last season but drafted Will Grier in this year’s third round. Rivera turned to Kyle Allen over Grier after Newton’s exit Thursday, however, pointing to the former UDFA (and Week 17 Panthers starter) being first in line to replace Newton if necessary. The Panthers do not plan to bring in any additional quarterbacks, with Rapoport adding Allen indeed will likely take the majority of the first-team reps in near-future practices.
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