One day after the Carolina Panthers' embarrassing 29-3 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, team owner David Tepper held a long meeting with local media to discuss the state of the franchise.
The Panthers have now lost their last two games and Kyle Allen has not looked like the quarterback he was earlier this year. Allen threw zero interceptions in his first four starts this season, but has thrown nine in the past four games. According to Nick Carboni of WCNC in Charlotte, Tepper is upset with Sunday's loss and the overall mediocrity of the organization throughout its history. He also added that it would be unwise to make any decisions on anyone's future right now.
The biggest decision that the Panthers will have to make in the near future will have to do with the quarterback position. After the 2019 season, Cam Newton will only have one year left on his current contract, a deal that the Panthers could look to unload this offseason. The final year of Newton's deal has a $21.1 million cap hit for Carolina, but the team can save a total of $19 million in cap space if they decide to cut him this offseason or trade him away.
Newton, who is on injured reserve, is expected to fully recover from the foot injury he suffered this season, but questions do remain about the 30-year-old's shoulder. After being shut down for the last two games in 2018, Newton didn't exactly impress in his two starts this season. He completed 56.2% of his passes for 572 yards, zero touchdowns and an interception, as the Panthers started the 2019 season with losses to the Los Angeles Rams and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Panthers understandably haven't yet made a decision with what they will do with their longtime quarterback, and one won't come until this offseason. According to Scott Fowler of The Charlotte Observer, Tepper says that all options are on the table when it comes to Newton's future, and it will remain that way until his health is determined.
It sure appeared as though it could be any easy decision earlier this year when Allen won his first four games, but now, the future is as hazy as ever. According to Carboni, both head coach Ron Rivera and offensive coordinator Norv Turner spoke with Allen after his four-interception performance against the Falcons, and they both delivered the same message: learn.
Parting ways with the quarterback that has led your team over the last nine years is a big decision, but it sure sounds like Tepper is ready to take some chances in an effort to lead this franchise into the future.