After an offseason shoulder surgery, the last thing Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers needed was a preseason injury to their star quarterback. Unfortunately, that was the case Thursday night as the Panthers squared off against the New England Patriots in what was the third preseason game for both teams. With his team up 10-3 Newton injured his foot after being tackled on a run and had to leave the game.

Newton was clearly in pain on the sideline.  The fans, the team and fantasy owners alike were hoping for the best case scenario regarding the injury. So, they were relieved to hear that the X-rays came back negative. The injury was diagnosed as a foot sprain and further tests revealed nothing major.  Bullet dodged – though sometimes a sprain can have a longer recovery time than a break. With a potential season jeopardizing injury behind them, both Newton and the Panthers are now cautiously optimistic that he will be able to play week 1 of the season.  What we know for sure is he won’t play in the fourth preseason game.  Assuming he can suit up for the first week, it’s hard to imagine there won’t be some rust to shake off after coming off shoulder surgery, a foot injury and a ton of missed practice time.

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