Panthers Facing Questions About Cam Newton's Quick Return

Jessica Allison
January 9, 2018

He's talking trash about Carolina players, retweeting Cam Newton memes and he even sent the Panthers quarterback a bottle of wine as a "thank you" for letting the Saints beat his team three times this season.

The Panthers could be fined as much as $150,000 if the investigation finds they didn't properly follow the league's concussion protocol. One of those modifications came into play Sunday with Newton: The change requires any player who falls or stumbles after suffering a potential head injury to be taken to the locker room for a concussion evaluation.

Newton ran headlong into New Orleans defensive tackle David Onyemata in the fourth quarter and was bowled over backward.

Newton walked toward the Panthers' sideline and appeared to stumble to the turf as trainers met him a few yards from the bench area. He sat out one play, but returned on the next series and finished the game. Any player showing "gross or sustained vertical instability" following a hit is now required to be evaluated for a concussion in the locker room, according to the NFL's updated concussion protocol.

The changes came in conjunction with a decision not to punish the Houston Texans for their handling of a concussion suffered by quarterback Tom Savage.

Panthers Coach Ron Rivera and Newton said after the game that the issue was that the player had been hit in the eye.

Newton said after the game the problem was with his eye, not a head injury. A sideline evaluation is not sufficient, under the modified rules.

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The organisation stipulates that any player suspected of having concussion must be evaluated in the dressing room.

Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan said he could not tell whether Newton was displaying any symptoms of a concussion.

But on Twitter, viewers shared memes blasting the Panthers for not following the concussion protocol. "And again, from that point on I don't think anything else needs to be said about it".

'NFL concussion protocol should have dictated taking out Cam Newton and examining him immediately after direct hit to his head, ' Pat Leonard wrote. "We romped him good".

"I thought we had a chance to score on that last drive", Rivera said, "and I kind of feel like that was taken away from us".

"Yeah, you know, Carolina picked him up so the brothers could reunite", Jordan said.

Other reports by My Hot News

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