Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton won't be playing much, if at all, in the Panthers preseason opener Friday, and the QB says he still gets short bouts of pain in his left ankle, which he had surgically repaired during the offseason.
“It’s like a thump from your mom when you said something that you weren’t supposed to, she’ll thump you dead in your ear or on your head,” Newton said. “It’ll hurt for that little second but it’ll go away after 2-3 minutes. It’s a reminder that, hey, you better check yourself.”
According to the Charlotte Observer, Newton practiced less on Wednesday and Thursday than he had in all of training camp so far.
Panthers coach Ron Rivera said it's all "part of the process," and wants to learn from teams who he felt rushed quarterbacks to return before they were ready.
One of Rivera's concerns is that Newton, who has not been allowed to scramble in practice, will try to do too much on the field in a game. If the quarterback does play Friday he will only appear for a series or two, doing mostly hand-offs.
The Panthers open the regular season on Sept. 7 at Tampa Bay.
- Molly Geary