CHARLOTTE – Quarterback Cam Newton returned to practice on Wednesday as he continues to progress through the stages of the concussion protocol.
"He looked good and threw the ball pretty doggone well," said head coach Ron Rivera, who noted that backup Derek Anderson took first-team reps as well.
"He was involved with the plays we had scripted for him. We'll see. We're all waiting with bated breath to find out how he is tomorrow."
As you'd expect, teammates were glad to have their star quarterback back on the practice field for the first time since he suffered the injury against Atlanta in Week 4.
"Just really happy that he's better," center Ryan Kalil said. "To have Cam not feeling like he was last week and seeing him more like himself was really good for all of us."
Said fullback Mike Tolbert: "It was fun to see our captain, our leader back on the field. The same bright smile, the same energy, same Cameron Jerrell Newton that we all know on this team. It was fun having him back on the field."
And as you'd also expect, Newton thoroughly enjoyed being back. He danced, he executed his choreographed handshakes with members of the offense and he even took some scout team reps.
"He brings energy to what we do," Rivera said. "He's trying to keep himself in check because of the protocol. But you can see him enjoying it. He even took some of the scout team reps. You could see him wanting to do more."
View photos of the Panthers' week of practice leading up to their game against New Orleans.