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Notes: Cam Newton's new look

SPARTANBURG , S.C. -- Cam Newton has a new look. But this time it has nothing to do with anything he's wearing.

The Panthers quarterback, who showed up at Wofford College on Tuesday in one of his now-trademark top hats, reported to training camp noticeably thinner.

"I think he came in somewhere around 246 (pounds) or something like that," head coach Ron Rivera said.

Assuming that number is accurate, it could be the closest Newton has dipped to his listed weight of 245 since coming to Carolina.

Last month, the 2015 NFL MVP wouldn't reveal what the scale was telling him, but he admitted, "I'm not that same 21-year-old that came into this league that can eat a bag of gummies and then go out and play four quarters of football."

Despite his conditioning, the Panthers will likely hold Newton back a bit, at least during the early part of camp. Four months removed from surgery that repaired a partially torn rotator cuff, he's still in a rehab program led by head athletic trainer Ryan Vermillion. That plan didn't allow Newton to begin throwing to his teammates until they went on their annual pre-camp trip to Baltimore last week, and it wouldn't be surprising if Newton is on some sort of pitch count.

"He had a good week last week from what I understand," Rivera said.

"He's had a very good offseason considering the fact he couldn't throw, but he worked very diligently."

And even though Newton labored through a 2016 season that in many ways was the worst of his career, he's not a guy who struggles to refill his confidence level.

"I think it's very high right now," Rivera said. "I think part of it is because of all the work he put in this year. He's done a great job. I think he had a tremendous offseason.

"I think his confidence level is very high, and now as we go into training camp and start flying, I believe he'll just build it every day."

--As far as the rest of the roster, Rivera said: "Everybody's here and accounted for."

That included receiver Kelvin Benjamin, who apparently checked in at a more acceptable weight than he did this spring.

"He looked really good," Rivera said. "We're not going to get into numbers, but he's where he needs to be. That's the best part, and we're excited about having him ready to roll."

--Center Ryan Kalil is still recovering from shoulder surgery but confidently proclaimed: "I'll be ready to go for Game One."

Now, you may assume the five-time Pro Bowler isn't in a huge rush to be full-go in the Spartanburg heat. But ...

"I actually feel the opposite. As you get older, it's nice to sort of getting a break from some of the hitting, but I'm of the mindset that I feel at my best when I get conditioned that way," the 11-year veteran said. "I don't think you can just sit around and because you've played 'X' amount of years you can just put your helmet and get back in the game. There's a conditioning aspect to it.

"It's one thing to be in shape and to work hard and run. Football pads and hitting is a completely different aspect, and if you don't get enough of that in before the season, I think it can hurt you long term."

--Daryl Williams took nearly every first-team rep at right tackle during OTAs and minicamp, so it's no surprise he's still penciled in as a starter.

"I thought he had a really good spring," Rivera said. "He came in in great shape, he made his weight, and I'm excited about it. He played very well for us last year and he just kept going."

The Panthers have high hopes for second-round pick Taylor Moton, but for now, he's slotted as Williams' backup.

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