Ron Rivera warned Cam Newton before game that he’d be benched if he didn’t wear a tie

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Panthers head coach Ron Rivera told Cam Newton the night before Carolina's game against the Seahawks that if he didn't wear a tie the next day, he would be benched for the first series, the NFL Network's Peter Schrager reports.

Newton showed up the next day without a necktie on, and Rivera made good on his word by benching him. Backup quarterback Derek Anderson instead led the team’s first drive, throwing an interception on the first play of the game that turned into a Seahawks field goal. Newton returned on the following drive.

The Seahawks ultimately blew out the Panthers, 40–7.

A video obtained by TMZ appears to show Rivera meeting with Newton outside the team bus to address the issue. Rivera reportedly got off his bus before they left for the airport and pulled Newton off his bus to speak with him about his attire.

After the game, Newton addressed his decision, saying he thought he had done something similar previously without being punished.

“I feel I wore a similar outfit as this before and nothing was done, but [Rivera] says he has rules in place and we have to abide by them,” Newton told reporters Sunday night. “No person is greater than the next person and, you know, it is what it is.”

The Panthers are in last place in the NFC South with a 4–8 record.

This article originally appeared on