Panthers QB Cam Newton suffers two back fractures in car crash

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton was hospitalized in fair condition with two transverse process fractures in his lower back and no further internal injuries after he was involved in an auto accident on Tuesday afternoon in Charlotte, N.C.

Newton's pickup truck overturned during a crash on the Church Street bridge over I-277 near Bank ofAmerica Stadium about 12:30 p.m. with a second car. Ambulances were called to the scene and the street was closed to traffic.


Newton remained conscious at the site. Pictures showed Newton smiling while being treated before he was strapped to a stretcher and placed in an ambulance. The driver of the other vehicle also had non-life-threatening injuries.

"Cam Newton is in fair condition and undergoing tests at Carolinas Medical Center and will remain there overnight for observation," the Panthers said in a statement released Tuesday afternoon.

There was no immediate word on how long Newton might be out. Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo had the same back injury earlier this season and missed one game.

Police are investigating the cause of the crash.

The 25-year-old Newton has passed for 2,800 yards this season with 16 touchdowns and 11 interceptions for the Panthers (4-8-1). He has an additional 425 yards and three rushing touchdowns.

Last Sunday in the Panthers' 41-10 win over the New Orleans Saints, Newton threw three touchdown passes.

If Newton is unable to return for Sunday's game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, veteran backupDerek Anderson likely would be the replacement. He started the season-opening 20-14 win over the Bucs that Newton missed while recovering from broken ribs.