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Cam Newton says shoulder is 'good' post surgery

Cam Newton is optimistic his offseason surgery will finally fix the nagging shoulder issue that prematurely ended his season.

Speaking on 680 The Fan in Atlanta -- Newton's hometown -- on Wednesday, the Carolina Panthers quarterback said the surgery went well.

"It's good. It's good," Newton said. "It's better than I thought it would be. With so much going on throughout the season, I was in fear, in fear to see what actually was wrong."

Newton's response to the cleanup surgery is notable, as sometimes doctors find the issue worse once they cut a player open, necessitating further procedures. It appears the QB avoided that fear.

A frustrated Newton looked like a shell of himself as the 2018 campaign wore on, unable to drive the ball on long throws and skipping a plethora of passes as the Panthers' seven-game losing streak stretched out through November and December. An irritated Newton intimated during the season that the issue lingered from the 2017 surgery.

In 2016, Newton played through the injury and delayed surgery until well into the offseason. This time around, the Panthers shut down the quarterback with two games remaining and he had a shoulder cleanup early in the offseason.

Newton was asked if his fear of being potentially shut down for the rest of the 2018 season delayed a meeting with team doctors.

"That wasn't the case at all," he said. "The case was I know there is something wrong. And before the doctors hit me with an ultimatum, I'd rather gut it out, and I knew something was wrong. For me, being in that position, I didn't want to let my team down. I didn't want to let my fans or even myself down to a degree. There's a benchmark that you set for yourself and when it's not met, you're frustrated. And obviously, this year was frustrating. But physically it just wore on me."

It was an injury that Newton could no longer fight through, and it hindered the Panthers' entire offensive operation.

"That's what was so frustrating. Is because it didn't' matter how much I would grunt, it didn't matter how much I would muscle up and try to throw it, it wasn't going far. You're looking at your arm, 'geez Louise. What's really the issue?' Granted you're looking around the league, guys like Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson, Tom Brady, Jared Goff, Matty Ice. These quarterbacks that you're saying, 'I can make that throw I know I can make that throw.' And to go to practice and prepare for games and even be in games and you can't make it physically that's something that's - I wouldn't say humbling - it just takes a hit at your pride."

The Panthers hope the early surgery will get Newton ready for offseason work, and that he comes out the other side finally fully healthy. Carolina needs Newton to return to his MVP-level play to recapture possible playoff positioning.

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