No. 1 pick Newton to get 1st preseason start

No. 1 draft pick Cam Newton will get his first start at quarterback for the Carolina Panthers in Friday's preseason game against Miami.

Panthers head coach Ron Rivera announced his decision after Wednesday's practice, saying it was the plan all along to rotate starts among the team's quarterbacks during the preseason.

Rivera said Newton would play the first quarter with the first-team offense, and Jimmy Clausen would play with the same group in the second quarter.

"We're doing like we did last week where Cam came in and played with that first group in the second quarter," said Rivera. "We want to make sure everybody gets an opportunity to play and work with the guys, and we feel it's important to keep that competition going."

Newton passed for 134 yards in his NFL exhibition debut against the New York Giants on Saturday while playing the second and third quarters behind Clausen.

Rivera hasn't decided who will start Carolina's regular season opener next month against Arizona. The Panthers also have Derek Anderson on the roster.

"We have a plan and we're sticking to it," the coach said. "As we go through this process, sometime next week we'd like to have a real good feel for what we're going to do as we go into the regular season."

Newton signed a four-year contract worth a reported $22 million after leading Auburn to the national title and winning the Heisman Trophy last college football season.

He was electric, setting single-season Auburn records for passing and rushing touchdowns, rushing yards by a quarterback, and total yards of offense.