Sports

Panthers coach Ron Rivera: QB Cam Newton to start against the Lions, practice on Wednesday

FILE - In this Sept. 7, 2014, file photo, Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, left, talks to quarterback Derek Anderson (3) during the second quarter of an NFL football in Tampa, Fla. Anderson proved he's a solid backup quarterback to have, throwing two TDs in Carolina's win against Tampa Bay. Now the question is if Anderson heads back to the bench or will start next Sunday's home opener against Detroit. (AP Photo/Brian Blanco, File)

FILE - In this Sept. 7, 2014, file photo, Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, left, talks to quarterback Derek Anderson (3) during the second quarter of an NFL football in Tampa, Fla. Anderson proved he's a solid backup quarterback to have, throwing two TDs in Carolina's win against Tampa Bay. Now the question is if Anderson heads back to the bench or will start next Sunday's home opener against Detroit. (AP Photo/Brian Blanco, File)  (The Associated Press)

Panthers coach Ron Rivera says Cam Newton will start the team's home opener Sunday against the Detroit Lions.

The two-time Pro Bowl quarterback was held out of Carolina's win on Sunday at Tampa Bay with fractured ribs, but backup Derek Anderson stepped in and threw for 230 yards and two touchdowns in a 20-14 victory.

Newton is expected to return to practice Wednesday after his streak of 48 consecutive starts was snapped.

Rivera says keeping Newton out against Tampa Bay was "one of the toughest decisions I've ever had to make," but doctors told him it will make a huge difference in his recovery.

For Anderson, it's back the bench.

He hadn't started a game since 2010, but helped the Panthers win their first season opener under Rivera and first overall since 2008.

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