Shocker: Today’s minicamp observations will focus on the one and only Cam Newton, who threw a predetermined number of passes (roughly a dozen) to stationary targets during quarterback drills for the first time since offseason shoulder surgery.
Before we get started on the practice recap, a quick note on Newton’s throwing motion, which has been discussed at length recently. Newton is working to make his mechanics as efficient as possible. The motion looked a little more compact today, which is what we can expect going forward.
And now, here’s a rundown of Newton’s Tuesday.
8:24 a.m.) Newton jogs out of the locker room and makes his way to the practice field. On his way, he bumps into owner David Tepper and shouts: “They got all the heavy hitters out at practice today!”
8:30) Newton joins the other quarterbacks on the far side of the field and starts loosening his arm. He also works on his throwing motion without releasing a ball.
8:39) Newton, while standing still, throws his first pass of the day to a member of the equipment staff. He proceeds to throw a handful of 10-yard passes.
8:40) Team stretch begins. This can’t be said with 100 percent certainty, but it sounds like Cam is singing the chorus of “Since You Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson. That’s it. That’s the observation.
8:46) Long snapper J.J. Jansen breaks the team down to get practice underway.
8:47) All four quarterbacks go through a footwork drill and complete short throws to stationary targets.
8:51) Newton throws roughly a 20-yard pass to a member of the equipment staff. He then takes it a step further by throwing a high-arcing 25-yard pass.
8:55) The running backs begin running routes in the flat for the quarterbacks. When it’s Newton’s turn, running back Christian McCaffrey stands still as he waits for the pass.
8:59) The wide receivers join the quarterbacks to run some routes against air. Wide receiver DJ Moore, tight end Greg Olsen, wide receiver Chris Hogan (aka Hoagie) and wide receiver Curtis Samuel serve as Newton’s stationary targets.
9:07) Installation period begins and Newton takes part. Moore playfully pulls Newton’s hair, which has gotten very long.
From there on, it was team drills and special teams drills. Newton did, however, take part in one more brief throwing session. Tight end Ian Thomas served as the stationary target in the end zone with Newton tossing 8-yard passes.
Newton was as chatty as he’s been all spring, messing around with teammates, coaches and officials. It was a good day – a step in the right direction – for Carolina’s franchise quarterback.
View photos of Cam Newton throwing during the first day of Panthers Minicamp.