NFL, NFLPA launch joint review of Cam Newton concussion protocol

NFL, NFLPA launch joint review of Cam Newton concussion protocol

The NFL has asked the Carolina Panthers to explain their handling of quarterback Cam Newton, who was cleared to return after taking a bang on the head during Sunday's wildcard play-off loss to the New Orleans Saints. If the concussion protocol was not properly followed the team is subject to discipline, including a $150,000 fine.

Coach Ron Rivera and general manager Mary Hurney said the Panthers followed the proper procedure, saying Newton had an eye injury and was not concussed.

Newton was slow to get up after defensive tackle David Onyemata hit him with 8 minutes, 26 seconds remaining in the Panthers' 31-26 loss. As he walked to the sideline, Newton went down to the ground, where he pointed to his eye as trainers checked him out.

Ultimately, Jordan does have a lot of respect for Newton, who is one of the hardest quarterbacks in the National Football League to corral, although the Saints star sacked him once on Sunday, batted down two passes, forced a pivotal intentional grounding penalty and helped Vonn Bell clean up Newton on the game's final play. "And it was really getting poked in the eye".

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'NFL concussion protocol should have dictated taking out Cam Newton and examining him immediately after direct hit to his head, ' Pat Leonard wrote.

"My helmet had come down low enough over my eyelid and it got pressed by the player's stomach".

The league and the players union changed its concussion protocol last month after Houston Texans quarterback Tom Savage returned to the field after having a concussion that left the quarterback's hands shaking after a hit.

"Based on what the young man (Newton) said to me, that is what I believe happened", Rivera said.

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"We tried to force him to be uncomfortable, we tried to force him to make errors, and I don't think he made many", Jordan said.

Later in the year, Newton said, "I didn't know he was a fan of my dress code".

This is not the first time the Panthers' handling of Newton has come under scrutiny.

It comes after the Seattle Seahawks were fined $100,000 for failing to test quarterback Russell Wilson in Week 10.

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