Kyle Allen, the backup quarterback for the Carolina Panthers who's been filling in for injured star Cam Newton since Week 2, took to Instagram to pay tribute to his sidelined predecessor after it was announced Allen would be finishing out the season as the starter.
Allen, 23, rose to the occasion during his second season in the NFL after Newton was benched early on with a serious foot injury. The Texas A&M grad has kept his 5-3 team in playoff contention, leading to questions about whether head coach Ron Rivera would potentially bench Allen for Newton once Newton was healthy enough to play.
But the dilemma seemed to resolve itself on Tuesday after the Panthers announced that Newton would be placed on injured reserve.
“For the past seven weeks, Cam has diligently followed a program of rest and rehab and still is experiencing pain in his foot,” Panthers general manager Marty Hurney said. “At this time, we have decided that the best decision to reach the goal of bringing the foot back to 100 percent is to place Cam on injured reserve.”
The announcement solidified Allen's hold on the job for at least the remainder of the season, leading Allen to post to Instagram to show appreciation for his teammate.
“I watched this man do everything in his power to come back from his injury. I watched him lead and be a great teammate day in day out,” Allen wrote under a picture of the two quarterbacks embracing.
“Thank you for setting the example. We got you.”
Newton appeared to show there were no hard feelings between the two in a comment on a post from the Panthers official Instagram.
“Charlotte and the Panthers will forever be in my heart!! I will work my tail off to be stronger, faster, SMARTER AND ACCURATER (sic) for you guys!! Until then I will continue to support the hell out of the Panthers and Kyle Allen,” the comment read.
Allen and the Panthers are set to take on the Green Bay Packers (7-2) next week.