As the league investigates whether the concussion protocol was properly followed with Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton on Sunday in New Orleans, the NFL now has an unexpected factor to consider.
Carolina Panthers Pro Bowl right guard Trai Turner was cleared from the concussion protocol on Saturday and is expected to start in Sunday's NFC wild-card playoff game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
The NFL and NFL Players Association are conducting a joint review into how the Carolina Panthers handled the concussion protocol as it related to a fourth-quarter hit on quarterback Cam Newton in Sunday's NFC playoff loss at New Orleans.
The Carolina Panthers, facing uncertainty with the team set to be sold by founder Jerry Richardson after the season, on Saturday signed coach Ron Rivera to a two-year contract extension that will run through the 2020 season.
The Carolina Panthers are facing scrutiny from the NFL after quickly clearing quarterback Cam Newton to play Sunday, less than two weeks after a league mandate requiring more extensive concussion testing for players demonstrating obvious symptoms.