Panthers QB Newton back on field for practice after big hits

FILE - In this Sept. 8, 2016, file photo, Denver Broncos free safety Darian Stewart (26) hits Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) late for a penalty during the second half of an NFL football game in Denver. As some Broncos players prepare to face the financial consequences of their helmet-to-helmet hits on Cam Newton, they insist they're not a dirty defense, although they don't really mind if that's their reputation. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey, File)
Jack Dempsey/AP

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Cam Newton returned to the practice field as the Carolina Panthers amped up their preparation for Sunday's home opener against the San Francisco 49ers.

Newton, wearing his typical long black sweatpants, long-sleeve black shirt and a red No. 1 practice jersey, took the field Wednesday and lined up with the first-team offense. He threw passes during warmups and looked fine.

It was the team's first practice since the league's reigning MVP took four helmet-to-helmet hits in last Thursday night's 21-20 loss to Denver – none of those resulting in penalty yardage against the Broncos. Since then, Newton has passed all of the concussion tests the team's medical staff has administered.

The NFL has not released whether it will fine any of the Denver defensive players involved for their hits on Newton.

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