The Carolina Panthers announced yesterday that Cam Newton underwent an arthroscopic procedure on his throwing shoulder. Their 44-word press release revealed little else about the nature of his procedure, his prognosis, or what specific evidence led team physician Pat Connor to recommend this treatment. Today, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting that the team is hopeful Newton will be back and throwing by Organized Team Activities (OTAs). Those begin in May.
OTAs are the earliest opportunity for Newton to officially throw passes to Panthers wide receivers and Christian McCaffrey under the supervision of Panthers coaches. That doesn’t mean he won’t be recovered before then and, as optimism goes, there is still every possibility that he takes longer than four months to fully recover.
I spoke with Dr. Bradford Parsons, Chief of Shoulder Surgery at the Mount Sinai Hospital, back in December about recovering from shoulder surgery. He shared then that every patient has a different timeline when it comes to healing. It isn’t an exact science.
While it is probably good news that Newton had this surgery two months earlier in the offseason than he had his 2017 procedure, the truth is that we don’t know what that means for his recovery. The Charlotte Observer is reporting, through an NFL source, that Newton’s procedure this time was “a clean-up” and not a full repair.
This is about as good as it gets within the context of Newton having an injured throwing shoulder. The two things left for Panthers fans to do are wait for further developments and not panic prematurely about either silence or delays in Newton’s recovery process.