Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has run the ball 40 times over the last four weeks of the season, which is up from 29 times over the first five weeks of the season but Newton said Wednesday that it isn’t because his surgically repaired right shoulder is feeling better than it was in September.
Newton said, via Steve Reed of the Associated Press, that he was “ready to rock and roll” at the start of the regular season and that he doesn’t see the uptick in running attempts as a result of major difference in the way he feels.
Part of that may be because Newton doesn’t feel all the way past the shoulder issue. Newton illustrated that point by saying that he still experiences pain in his shoulder still hurts from time to time. He said those times usually aren’t on Sundays, but the pain can crop up in the days after a game.
Newton has not had much success throwing the ball in recent weeks, but the Panthers have won their last two games and can head into the bye with a 7-3 record by beating the Dolphins on Monday night. That and the success Newton’s had while running the ball makes it easier to be patient with any lingering shoulder trouble.