Rookie first round draft pick Cam Newton will make his first professional start against the Dolphins in Friday night's preseason game at Sun Life Stadium, various media outlets are reporting.
"It's pretty much following the line of what we had planned throughout training camp, and that's to go back and forth and back and forth with our guys," Panthers coach Ron Rivera said. "It's a good opportunity."
That means its Newton versus Miami's much-hyped defense. That means it's Newton versus Chad Henne, who will start Friday's game for the Dolphins.
Rivera said his starters are expected to play about a half.
Coach Tony Sparano said Henne would start and play along with Miami's starters as deep as the second quarter. We'll see if the coach goes with his starter that long if Henne comes out hot and drives the Dolphins to a touchdown on his their first or second possession.
At that point does the quarterback's soaring (for the moment) confidence mean more to Sparano than mere snaps in a meaningless game?
The coach said Matt Moore would take second team snaps for the Dolphins versus the Panthers, with those likely coming no earlier than the second quarter.
We shall see.
Reggie Bush will make his Miami Dolphins debut (at least his preseason debut) on Friday, Sparano confirmed. He will start and rookie Daniel Thomas will also get work with the first-team offense.
Sparano said he had an idea how many touches he wants to give Bush but would not say because he wants to tell the player first. "I want him to get up a good lather," the coach added.
The Dolphins say the game, which is Miami's home preseason opener, will be televised locally. The game will be broadcast on CBS-4 in South Florida.