After indicating on Friday morning that the medical team at Thursday night’s game did an appropriate job of monitoring Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, the league now says it will take a longer look at the matter.
The league said in a statement today that it will review all relevant aspects of the events that transpired on Thursday night in a more thorough effort to determine whether the medical professionals should have pulled Newton from the game.
“The NFL is committed to the proper application of the Concussion Protocol,” the league’s statement said. “In order to ensure that it is being uniformly applied across all 32 NFL teams, we have decided to initiate a review of the medical team’s response to the Cam Newton tackle, under the procedure set forth by the collective bargaining agreement. Under that procedure, representatives from the league and the players association will review the relevant documents and video and interview the involved parties to ensure that the Protocol was applied properly. It is important to note that initiation of this process does not mean that we have seen any evidence that the Protocol was applied improperly, but simply reflects our obligation to ensure the health and safety of our players.”
Newton was hit in the head several times during Thursday night’s game, including one hit that the NFL has since admitted should have resulted in a penalty on Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall. The Panthers say he was evaluated during and after the game and did not suffer a concussion. Still, league protocols indicate that a player who suffers a hard hit to the head needs to be checked out, and during Thursday night’s game it appeared that those protocols were not met.