NFL, NFLPA to investigate Panthers' concussion evaluation of Cam Newton
Jan 09, 2018, 00:31
On Sunday, the Carolina Panthers were in the midst of trying to complete a comeback victory over a team that had beaten them twice already during the season, but a monkey wrench was thrown into their plans when Cam Newton took a vicious shot from a Saints defender late in the 4th quarter.
The NFL said it was in contact with the Panthers medical staff.
In Sunday's wild-card loss to the New Orleans Saints, Newton was hit hard by Saints defensive lineman David Onyemata with about nine minutes left in the fourth quarter.
Newton walked toward the Panthers' sideline and appeared to stumble to the turf as trainers met him a few yards from the bench area. He returned after missing only one offensive play; the Panthers announced he had been evaluated for a concussion and cleared to play. The Saints won the game, 31-26, sacking Newton on the game's final play. But in revisions to its concussion policy announced December 29, the National Football League said it would "require a locker room concussion evaluation for all players demonstrating gross or sustained vertical instability (e.g., stumbling or falling to the ground when trying to stand)". Rivera said during his postgame news conference that Newton was told to sit down near the sideline to give Anderson an opportunity to warm up before going into the game.
"I appreciate him. So I'm gonna send him some sauce", Jordan said after the game, via ESPN. A sideline evaluation is not sufficient, under the modified rules.
'NFL concussion protocol should have dictated taking out Cam Newton and examining him immediately after direct hit to his head, ' Pat Leonard wrote.
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It is the third incident this season known to have been formally investigated by the league and union under the policy they developed through a 2016 agreement, although they informally review every concussion evaluation.
However, the question could become whether or not Newton should have been taken to the locker room for evaluations.
No violations were found in an investigation of the Houston Texans' decision to clear quarterback Tom Savage despite visible concussion-like symptoms on the field.
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