GM de­fends Newton de­ci­sion

QB ‘wanted to play’ de­spite shoul­der in­jury, Pan­thers say.

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS -

Pan­thers gen­eral man­ager Dave Get­tle­man isn’t sec­ond-guess­ing the team’s de­ci­sion to al­low Cam Newton to con­tinue to play last sea­son de­spite a par­tially torn ro­ta­tor cuff in his right throw­ing shoul­der.

“Cam is a foot­ball player and he wanted to play and the med­i­cal peo­ple felt it was fine, so we did,” Get­tle­man said Fri­day.

Newton played the fi­nal three games of the 2016 sea­son even though Carolina’s play­off hopes were es­sen­tially over with a 5-8 record.

The Pan­thers hoped rest and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion this off­sea­son would solve the prob­lem, but that didn’t work out. The team an­nounced ear­lier this week Newton would need shoul­der surgery Thurs­day.

Newton will miss all of OTAs and mini­camp, but Get­tle­man re­it­er­ated that he ex­pects the six-year NFL vet­eran back in time for the start of train­ing camp in late July.

Pan­thers coach Ron Rivera said last De­cem­ber that an MRI on Newton’s shoul­der was clean af­ter the team’s Week 14 win over the San Diego Charg­ers.

Al­though the team never dis­closed the par­tially torn ro­ta­tor cuff in the me­dia, Rivera did limit the quar­ter­back’s reps in prac­tice and in­cluded him on the in­jury re­port the rest of the sea­son.

Get­tle­man also said the team plans to pick up the fifth-year op­tion on Kelvin Ben­jamin’s rookie con­tract. That will pay Ben­jamin about $8 mil­lion in 2018.

Jets: GM Mike Maccagnan says it is “highly un­likely” New York will add an­other vet­eran quar­ter­back af­ter sign­ing Josh McCown ear­lier this week.

Maccagnan added dur­ing a con­fer­ence call Fri­day that any other po­ten­tial ad­di­tional quar­ter­back would likely come through the draft. The Jets have the No. 6 over­all pick, and the GM says he likes the team’s op­tions at that spot, but is also “ide­ally” look­ing to get more picks in this year’s draft.

Bears: Con­tin­ued their quar­ter­back makeover by sign­ing vet­eran Mark Sanchez, who is ex­pected to back up Mike Glen­non next sea­son. Sanchez, signed to a one-year con­tract, gives Chicago an ex­pe­ri­enced backup to pair with de­vel­op­men­tal prospect Con­nor Shaw.

Sanchez was re­leased by Den­ver last year af­ter los­ing a pre­sea­son com­pe­ti­tion for the start­ing job to Trevor Siemian. He backed up NFL Of­fen­sive Rookie of the Year Dak Prescott in Dal­las, play­ing in two games.

Red­skins: Signed for­mer Rams wide receiver Brian Quick, adding depth at a po­si­tion where they lost DeSean Jack­son and Pierre Gar­con in free agency. Quick, 27, is 6-foot-5 and gives Wash­ing­ton an­other tall op­tion along with re­cently signed receiver Ter­relle Pryor. Quick had 41 catches for 564 yards and three touch­downs last sea­son with the Rams.

Colts: Re­leased de­fen­sive tackle Arthur Jones. A six-year vet­eran, Jones was sched­uled to cost the team $7.35 mil­lion next sea­son. In­di­anapo­lis will save $5 mil­lion un­der the salary cap with the move. Jones did his best work while with Bal­ti­more from 2010-14. He then signed a five-year con­tract for a to­tal value of $33 mil­lion with the Colts, but strug­gled with mul­ti­ple in­juries in In­di­anapo­lis.

Jaguars: Signed de­fen­sive end Mal­li­ciah Good­man, who ap­peared in 37 ca­reer games for the Fal­cons, get­ting 29 tack­les, two forced fum­bles and two fum­ble re­cov­er­ies.

Carolina QB Cam Newton is sched­uled for surgery next week.

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