QB Cam Newton - Carolina Panthers
|6-5, 248||Born: 5-10-1989||College: Auburn||Drafted: Round 1, pick 1|
He is listed as probable on this week's official injury report.
News you need to know
From Mark Wimer's Monday injury report (Mon Dec 15): As expected, Newton was out on Sunday due to fractures in his back sustained during a serious traffic accident earlier in the week. Newton (back) will only start in Week 16 if the team believes Newton can protect himself during the game, according to head coach Ron Rivera. 'I don't want to put a guy out there that can't protect himself,' Rivera said. 'By that it's being able to run out of the way, scramble out of the way, stay alive, keep the play alive by being able to get away. That's all part of it. That's all part of the decision that went into the first Tampa Bay game.' The team has a rehab program for Newton, and his status will be determined based on if he can meet the rehab goals during the week.
From the upgrade/downgrade report (Mon Dec 15): Newton missed Week 15 after his rollover accident because of two small fractures in his back, but he could be back in Week 16 for a game against the reeling Browns defense. He's worth a start if he's active.
General News (Fri Dec 19): practiced fully on Friday and is expected to play this week. Newton has yet to officially be cleared to play in Week 16 against the Cleveland Browns, but head coach Ron Rivera is "very comfortable and confident" that Newton will start. "Right now, everything is pointing in the right direction," Rivera said. "The reason I haven't said anything (definitive) is because of that one big thing, waiting for doctors to tell me they feel good about it." Newton hasn't shown any signs of pain in practice this week.
General News (Thu Dec 18): practiced fully on Thursday. Newton had an increased set of repetitions in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, and it looks like he's on track to play in Week 16 against the Cleveland Browns. Head coach Ron Rivera has yet to name Newton the starter, though, but he showed no signs of pain for the second straight day. Newton has been showing good velocity on his throws and hasn't had restrictions with his movement. Derek Anderson took second-team reps Thursday. Newton said he is not dealing with any pain in his back but is taking things one day at a time. Newton said he needs to be 100 percent before he can play.
General News (Wed Dec 17): partially participated in Wednesday's practice. Newton worked with the second-team offense in the portion of practice open to the media. Derek Anderson worked with the first-team. Newton's status for Week 16 against the Cleveland Browns is uncertain right now, but he looked to be moving and throwing well Wednesday. He also ran and make some juke moves without difficulty.
General News (Tue Dec 16): will only start in Week 16 if the team believes Newton can protect himself during the game, according to head coach Ron Rivera. "I don't want to put a guy out there that can't protect himself," Rivera said. "By that it's being able to run out of the way, scramble out of the way, stay alive, keep the play alive by being able to get away. That's all part of it. That's all part of the decision that went into the first Tampa Bay game."
Week 16: vs Cleveland Browns
Mark and Joe say: Neutral matchup. Derek Anderson did a fine job (again) in relief of Cam Newton, winning his second start of the year during Week 16 with 25/40 for 277 yards, one TD and zero interceptions thrown during the 19-17 victory. Greg Olsen (13 targets for 10/110/0 receiving) and Kelvin Benjamin (13 for 8/104/0) were his main targets last week, but Jerricho Cotchery (five for 5/57/1) handled the lone TD pass from Anderson. The early word on Newton this week is as follows: head coach Ron Rivera said on Monday 'I don't want to put a guy out there that can't protect himself. By that it's being able to run out of the way, scramble out of the way, stay alive, keep the play alive by being able to get away. That's all part of it. That's all part of the decision that went into the first Tampa Bay game.' The team has a rehab program for Newton, and his status will be determined based on if he can meet the rehab goals during the week. Stay tuned to Footballguys.com's Players in the News as we get closer to the weekend to determine if Newton will start on Sunday or not. Anderson is doing a good job for Carolina as the interim starter, so there is no need to rush Newton back into action. The Browns' D faces this situation - with rookie Johnny Manziel under center, the Browns' offense couldn't sustain drives during his first start, leading to a 38:52 to 21:08 time of possession disparity in favor of Cleveland last week (leading to fatigue for the Browns' over-worked defenders). As Manziel is in the saddle to stay for this season, their defense is likely to face another endurance test this week - Cincinnati piled up 45/244/3 rushing in the other phase of the game last week. If Carolina can do something similar, whoever is under center won't need to pass the ball much on Sunday. This is a neutral matchup as of midweek because we don't know if Cam will be running the football on Sunday - if his back can take ball-carrying duties. It is likely that either quarterback won't need to throw the ball a lot as the Cleveland offense is currently a horrid mess with a new rookie quarterback facing his second NFL start this week.
Recent Stats and Projections
Recent Game Summaries
2014 Week 13 vs MIN (18 / 35 / 194 / 1 / 1 pass, 9 / 49 / 0 rush)
It was the same old script for the Panthers and Cam Newton against Minnesota as a poor offensive line display, combined with a calamity of errors on special teams, doomed the team to another loss. Pressure was the name of the game once more as the Panthers fielded their seventh different offensive line combination of the season. Newton was hassled and harried early and often by the Minnesota front four and often had to use his legs to keep plays alive. He did it well for the most part in the early stages, but as the pressure built more mistakes began to rear their ugly heads. Newton's accuracy and decision making started to become an issue as he almost threw an interception on a hitch pattern to Kelvin Benjamin. The cornerback jumped the pattern and only Benjamin's effort to strip the ball from him prevented a pick. Newton looked comfortable running the ball on option keepers and improvised plays and kept a couple of drives alive with his feet. However, when it came to the red zone, the inability to execute on third down was once again the Panthers' downfall. The inability of his receivers to get open combined with a poor offensive line did not give Newton enough time to survey the field and find his target. Newton tossed a touchdown pass to Philly Brown on a deep post route ń a fourth down play that gave the Panthers a glimmer of hope. It was a good read by Newton, who saw safety Harrison Smith out of position. With the cornerback in outside technique, it was a simple toss up to Brown, who almost caught the football like a punt. Newton tossed a late interception down the right sideline, as an excellent play by Josh Robinson in trail technique on young receiver De'Andre Presley essentially ended the game. It was not the worst display by Newton, but it is clear his confidence is low right now.
2014 Week 14 vs NO (21 / 33 / 226 / 3 / 0 pass, 12 / 83 / 1 rush)
Apart from a fight in the end zone in the second quarter that resulted in an ejection, Cam Newton and the Panthers offense stayed in control for this entire contest. The Saints defense simply had no rebuke to a barrage of Panthers points and successfully executed plays. Newton got into a rhythm early with some easy completions between the hashes to Kelvin Benjamin and Greg Olsen, following it up with a zone read run that he kept the football on. Newton looked quick in and out of his cuts and decisive in his reads, showing no evidence of "seeing ghosts" or any lingering injuries. He saw the field clearly and tossed his first touchdown pass to Benjamin in the red zone, a bullet to the left sideline away and outside of the defender. On occasion, Newton showed a touch of inaccuracy, but nothing that hasn't been a staple of his game since being drafted. On a few plays, instead of fading back and retreating from pressure, Newton showed subtle pocket movement skills to buy a second more before firing downfield. He seemed more comfortable in his skin and looked spry when he dove over the top at the one-yard line for a touchdown, almost being tipped upside down in the process. Newton's favourite target Olsen got behind the defense when the Panthers made their next trip to the red zone, giving him a simple pass for an even simpler touchdown. The play fake by Newton was excellent, but the defense was non-existent. Capping off a controlled and mature display, Newton hit Fozzy Whittaker on a screen pass and the young back did the rest, following his blocks to the end zone. In what was probably Newton-s finest performance of the year, his poise in the pocket and ability to see the field clearly - owing in large part to a massively improved offensive line display - were keys to his success.
Latest NewsPanthers | Cam Newton expected to start (Fri Dec 19, 04:07 PM) - Updating previous reports, Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) has yet to officially be cleared to play in Week 16 against the Cleveland Browns, but head coach Ron Rivera is 'very comfortable and confident' that Newton will start. 'Right now, everything is pointing in the right direction,' Rivera said. 'The reason I haven't said anything (definitive) is because of that one big thing, waiting for doctors to tell me they feel good about it.' Newton hasn't shown any signs of pain in practice this week. Our View: Check back on Sunday morning, but if Newton looks like your best QB for the championship, it looks like you'll have him available on Sunday.
link to story Panthers | Cam Newton probable against Browns (Fri Dec 19, 12:49 PM) - Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) is listed as probable for Week 16 against the Cleveland Browns. Our View: Newton will play, but the extent of his ability to run effectively is unknown. He's not an ideal option this week at quarterback.
link to story Panthers | Cam Newton fully practices (Thu Dec 18, 02:42 PM) - Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) fully participated in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, and appears to be on track to start in Week 16, according to head coach Ron Rivera. Our View: Looks like he is good to go, but keep in mind it's not an easy matchup. There is also the back injury. We see him as a QB2 this week.
link to story Panthers | Cam Newton not dealing with pain (Thu Dec 18, 01:56 PM) - Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) said he is not dealing with any pain in his back but is taking things one day at a time. Newton said he needs to be 100 percent before he can play. Our View: Newton has a lot against him this week, not the least of which would be his back issues. A lack of weapons, a poor offensive line and an occasionally tough Cleveland Browns defense make him no more than a QB2 this week.
link to story Panthers | Cam Newton on track to start? (Thu Dec 18, 01:17 PM) - Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) had an increased set of repetitions in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, and it looks like he's on track to play in Week 16 against the Cleveland Browns. Head coach Ron Rivera has yet to name Newton the starter, though, but he showed no signs of pain for the second straight day. Newton has been showing good velocity on his throws and hasn't had restrictions with his movement. QB Derek Anderson took second-team reps Thursday. Our View: We're still concerned about Newton for this weekend, and have him as a middle-of-the-road QB2. The injury, the lack of weapons and even the Cleveland defense give us some concern—added together Newton won't be his usual QB1 self.
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