CHARLOTTE, N.C. (The Charlotte Observer) - In a vlog post released Friday afternoon, Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton explained what’s really going on with left foot his as he prepares to sit out his second straight game.
Newton, smoking a cigar and sipping a glass of wine, confirmed that his mid-left foot sprain is actually a “mild” Lisfranc injury. The Athletic’s Joe Person first reported last week that Newton’s foot sprain was a Lisfranc.
Newton said that he was focused strictly on his shoulder coming into the 2019 season, until the team went to New England for Week 3 of the preseason.
“It happened — the unthinkable, so to speak,” Newton said. “Something else got hurt.”
The quarterback says he immediately felt something wrong in his foot, but over the next two weeks leading up to the Panthers home opener against the Rams, he convinced himself he needed to play.
“This is where I got in my own way,” he said. “Because I thought automatically, I’ve gotta play Week 1. I can’t let my fans down.”
But after struggling with a noticeable limp during practice that week, Newton attempted his pregame ritual of jogging and warming up all over the field at Bank of America Stadium. Only, he quickly realized he wasn’t 100 percent.
“Week 1, as I’m about to jog around, I realize: Oh, I can’t run,” he said.
After losses to the Rams and Tampa to start the season, including a last-second 4th-and-1 play for the game against the Buccaneers, Newton realized he couldn’t continue playing. He specifically said he wasn’t sure he could push off his foot to gain that yard against Tampa, when in the past, “you know what’s about to happen; you can’t stop it.”
He then went to coach Ron Rivera, general manager Marty Hurney and the rest of the team’s power structure and told them he needed time to get his body right.
“I needed to see that me at 80 percent was not okay,” Newton said. “I realize it’s okay to take time.
“I’ve just gotta get right.”
Newton said that Rivera and Hurney were totally accepting of letting him take time to heal. Newton didn’t elaborate on a specific timeline for his return, saying it could take anywhere from one week to six.
He also said that in the meantime, he will do everything he can to support his teammates overall and especially backup quarterback Kyle Allen. Allen threw four touchdowns in his second career NFL start last weekend against Arizona.
He also said that for those already writing him off, to just wait and see what the Panthers accomplish when he returns.
“If I’m able to get the time off for me to heal and get back to 100 percent,” he said, “then I have no doubt in my mind everything that we want as a team can still be accomplished.”