Newton injured his ankle in a Week 16 win over the New Orleans Saints. The team's quarterback was limping after being sacked, but finished the game and was able to start against the Atlanta Falcons despite being listed on the injury report leading up to the game.
Voth reports that Newton will miss four months, keeping him out of OTAs but it's expected he'll be able to participate in training camp. The surgery is to tighten up ankle ligaments that were stretched in the contest.
It's relatively small news in the grand scheme of things, but another disappointment for Panthers fans who have endured many letdowns over the first week of free agency. Expectations have been doused thanks to the lack of a top receiver after cutting Steve Smith and the team will lean more on Newton to take on a greater leadership role in 2014. This isn't a "sky is falling" moment, but if there are any delays in his recovery it could be devastating.