The latest on Cam Newton's shoulder continues to be good news.
Carolina is wisely being cautious with Newton, who's coming off surgery in late March to repair a partially torn rotator cuff. It doesn't take a medical degree to prove a shoulder injury and subsequent operation is important to a quarterback.
The numbers don't exactly show it -- Newton managed to throw for 237 yards in a Week 17 loss, a week after going 18 for 43 in a loss to Atlanta -- but the quarterback was less than his best self down the stretch last season, as Carolina limped to just two wins in its final six games. Injuries and inconsistent play, especially along the offensive line, doomed Carolina, and it made sense when it was revealed after the season that Newton had been playing through his own ailment.
There's little to no reason for Newton to take a single snap of game action prior to Week 1 of the regular season, which everyone involved knows. But monitoring his ability to throw in practice is important, because it serves as our sole barometer of where his shoulder is. With proper treatment and monitoring off the field, Newton should be fine come kickoff weekend.
Elsewhere in injury news Sunday:
- Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette was held out of practice Sunday. Coach Doug Marrone said Fournette is dealing with a nagging foot injury and missed practice for precautionary measures.
Receiver Marqise Lee was carted off the field after suffering an apparent leg injury in practice on Sunday. Marrone told reporters after practice he is unsure of the extent of Lee's injury and the receiver is undergoing further evaluation. Per Rapoport and Garafolo, the injury is not believed to be serious.
- Bears wide receiver Markus Wheaton broke his finger in practice on Sunday, the team announced. Wheaton had been previously sidelined during training camp after undergoing an appendectomy.