Cam Newton did something on Sunday for the first time since sustaining a Lisfranc injury two weeks in the 2019 season. Newton, the Panthers' veteran quarterback, traveled with his teammates to an away game, standing on the sidelines during Carolina's 51-13 drubbing at the hands of the San Francisco 49ers. The loss ended a four-game winning streak for the Panthers and quarterback Kyle Allen, who threw three interceptions on Sunday after not throwing a single pick in his first four starts.
Newton will remain on the sideline for the Panthers Week 9 against the Tennessee Titans, as Panthers head coach Ron Rivera announced on Monday that Newton is still not ready to play. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, Rivera on Monday said Newton is "in the middle of his rehab," indicating he's still more than a week away from returning.
Rivera offered a similar update on Newton immediately following Sunday's loss.
"Cam is still rehabbing," Rivera said, via Joseph Person of The Athletic. "I'll tell you guys where he is on Monday. I'll tell you where he is on Wednesday. You don't need to ask after that, to be honest with you."
Newton initially sustained an injury to his foot during the Panthers' third preseason game against the New England Patriots. Newton's injury undoubtedly contributed to his rocky start to the season. In two games this season, Newton completed just 56.3 percent of his passes. He also failed to throw a touchdown pass while running just five times for -2 yards. Newton's lack of productivity contributed to the Panthers' 0-2 start to the season.
A former undrafted rookie, Allen helped lead Carolina to four consecutive wins prior to Sunday's blowout loss in San Francisco. Allen, the first former undrafted rookie to win their first four NFL starts since Kurt Warner accomplished that feat back in 1999, has completed 62.3 percent of his passes with a 7/3 touchdown/interception ratio.
Allen, like most of teammates, struggled Sunday against the undefeated 49ers and their third ranked defense. Allen, whose three interceptions led to 17 49ers points, was sacked seven times that included six times in the opening half.
"Once he got behind the 8-ball a little bit, he pressed and tried to make some throws he really didn't need to," Rivera said, via the Charlotte Observer's Luke DeCock. "There were some other throws he could have made, but again, he was trying to win a football game."
"It's football, man," Allen said when asked to assess his performance. "Stuff's not always going to go your way."
Conversely, San Francisco's offense had no issues moving the ball against Carolina, amassing nearly 400 yards of total offense that included 232 yards and five touchdowns on the ground.
While Sunday's loss was a collective effort, it appears that, given Allen's struggles in San Francisco, any quarterback controversy that may have been bubbling in Carolina appears to be over.