Now, it appears the quarterback has officially thrown in the towel on his own 2019 season.
According to NFL Network's Tiffany Blackmon, Newton plans to undergo foot surgery. After landing on injured reserve in November, the three-time Pro Bowler would've been eligible to return to the active roster for the first round of the playoffs, but with Carolina on the outside of the postseason picture looking in, Newton will effectively shut himself down by having surgery.
According to CBS Sports Senior Writer Jonathan Jones, Newton was still undecided on surgery as recently as last week, when he had a doctor's appointment and was still attempting to clarify the extent and type of operation needed. After receiving multiple medical opinions from across the country, he opted to move forward.
The former MVP appeared in just two games in 2019 after injuring his foot in the preseason, opening with sluggish performances in the team's 0-2 start before telling fans in late September he was recovering from a Lisfranc fracture. Second-year backup Kyle Allen took over for Newton starting in Week 3, and the Panthers finally placed Newton on IR Nov. 5, indicating the QB's foot was healing slower than expected.
His failure to return was not for lack of trying, per NFL Network, but surgery figures to keep him sidelined until March, when the Panthers will begin 2020 offseason workouts.
That's if, of course, Newton returns to the Panthers at all. The 30-year-old signal-caller has undergone shoulder surgery in back-to-back offseasons, posted QB ratings of 80 or below in three of his last four seasons and will be entering the final year of a $100 million contract signed in 2015, the year he led Carolina to the Super Bowl. that Newton himself would welcome a trade out of Carolina come March, even highlighting the Chicago Bears as a potential destination.