The news keeps getting worse for the Carolina Panthers.
Quarterback Cam Newton, who was hit on a scramble by New England Patriots linebacker Jamie Collins on Friday, suffered a hairline fracture in one of his ribs and will miss the team's fourth preseason game. Head coach Ron Rivera confirmed the news Sunday but said Newton still could play Week 1 against the Buccaneers in Tampa Bay.
Rivera says Cam Newton has a hairline fracture in one of his ribs. Newton won't play vs. Steelers. Rivera thinks he'll be ready for Week 1.
— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) August 24, 2014
[ Smack talk season is back at Yahoo Sports: Sign up and play free Fantasy Football!]
Newton, who had ankle surgery in the offseason and isn't fully recovered from it, has been up and down in the preseason after missing most of the offseason program before training camp. If Newton can't go in the regular-season opener, he'd be replaced by Derek Anderson, who likely will take a decent number of snaps against the Steelers on Thursday just in case.
Rivera said Newton was hurting from the injury.
“There is a lot of concern. This morning he came in and he was very, very sore,” Rivera said. “We expect him to get past the soreness the next few days and then be able to do a lot more as the days go.”
The Panthers' offensive line let him down Friday and has been an area of concern since the offseason, when three veterans — including retired offensive tackle Jordan Gross — left the unit. The Panthers had hoped to get Newton more reps this week with the offense struggling, but now that won't happen.
More NFL coverage from Yahoo Sports:
- - - - - - -