The 2015 NFL MVP’s 2019 season is in question.
Cam Newton was held out of the Carolina Panthers’ final two regular-season games due to a sore right shoulder. The gunslinger underwent surgery on his throwing arm prior to the 2017 season, and it appears the 29-year-old might require more rest, or perhaps another surgery, to return to full strength.
Panthers owner David Tepper on Tuesday acknowledged to ESPN’s David Newton the quarterback could sit out next season to return to full strength.
“If you told me he took a year off and could recover and be fully recovered and everything else, and that’s what it took, an extra year, why wouldn’t you do (that)?” Tepper said.
The situation somewhat is similar to the one the Indianapolis Colts faced with Andrew Luck, who missed the entire 2017 season after undergoing surgery.
“When you make a decision, this gets into business, or here … you want to keep your options open as much as possible,” Tepper said. “And you want to put yourself in a position to win. Not a position to lose, but a position to win.
“Hopefully, Cam’s shoulder is fantastic, right? And we’re hunky dory, all fantastic,” he added. “If it’s not, you may need more cap space. You may need to go out and find somebody. If you don’t, you guys are going to be writing what a dope we are here. Why did we make these other moves? “So think about that. You want to keep your options open, put yourself in best position as you can to win, and I’m talking again for the long term.”
Newton posted a career high with a 67.1 completion percentage this season with 3,395 yards, 24 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in 14 games for the Panthers, who finished 7-9. It was a step in the right direction, but it still was far from the numbers he posted in his MVP campaign.
If Newton were to sit out next season, that definitely would add one more to the list of teams looking for a quarterback on the market.
Thumbnail photo via Jeremy Brevard/USA TODAY Sports