17. Panthers (26): As prodigal son Cam Newton prepares to reclaim QB1 status in Carolina, you have to wonder if injured Sam Darnold -- he's guaranteed nearly $19 million in 2022 -- is already entering the backup phase of a career that doesn't yet span four seasons.

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Cam Newton to start for Panthers on Sunday

Cam Newton will be the starting quarterback for the Carolina Panthers on Sunday against the visiting Washington Football Team.

Head coach Matt Rhule confirmed Friday that Newton “will take the first snap,” but also said P.J. Walker will be active and will have a role in the offense.

“We have plays for Cam, plays for P.J.,” Rhule said. “P.J. we think is an excellent quarterback, Cam can make a difference, so we’ll use both of them.”

The Panthers signed Newton to a free-agent deal on Nov. 12 after putting quarterback Sam Darnold (shoulder) on injured reserve. It marked a return to Carolina for Newton, whom the franchise drafted No. 1 overall in 2011.

Newton, 32, was released prior to the 2020 season and spent last season with the New England Patriots.

He played nine snaps and accounted for two touchdowns (one passing, one rushing) in last Sunday’s 34-10 win against the Arizona Cardinals, a game started by Walker.

When the Panthers (5-5) face Washington (3-6) on Sunday afternoon in Charlotte, N.C., the coach on the opposite sideline will be Ron Rivera.

Rivera was Newton’s head coach in Carolina from 2011-19, a stretch that included an MVP season for Newton in 2015 and a loss to the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50.

–Field Level Media

Field Level Media
Sport Writer & Editor
FLM has a North American focus while tying into regional and hyper-local resources – providing the ability to distribute compelling content through the writing of professional journalists. As the U.S. sports content provider to dozens of digital and print media publishers through strategic partnerships with the likes of Reuters and Nielsen Sports, FLM covers the nuts and bolts with a breaking news desk and game event coverage.

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