South Rumors: Panthers, Colts, Watt

Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen will get a chance to rebound from the worst start of his career. After a three-interception performance against the 49ers, Allen will make his sixth start of the season, Ron Rivera confirmed. Cam Newton will not return from his foot injury this week against the Titans. Instead, Newton will continue to rehab, according to David Newton of ESPN.com. Newton has been out since re-injuring his foot in Week 2 against the Buccaneers.

Here’s some other notes from the South:

  • J.J. Watt underwent a successful surgery on his torn pectoral muscle earlier Tuesday, according to James Palmer of NFL.com. Watt, who has consistently been one of the best players in football since entering the league in 2011, suffered a season-ending injury Sunday against the Raiders. Currently in prime playoff position, the Texans will have to make another push without Watt on the field. Houston did not have Watt for its 2016 playoff run.
  • Colts ownership has given Chris Ballard full autonomy in player personnel decisions, according to Stephen Holder of The Athletic (subscription required). Owner Jim Irsay encouraged the front office to pursue an unnamed linebacker in free agency, but did not force them to join a bidding war for a defender his football operations office did not deem worth a certain price tag. “I gave (Ballard) unfettered approval …” Irsay said, via Holder. “And he still backed out. He said, ‘They went to this number and, Jim, I just couldn’t.” This doesn’t necessarily name C.J. Mosley, but the Colts were interested in the ex-Ravens standout before the linebacker signed a record-setting contract with the Jets.
  • Although the Falcons have slipped well out of contention, Matt Ryan is set to return after their Week 9 bye.
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