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SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) Coach Ron Rivera says he's unsure if quarterback Cam Newton will play in the Carolina Panthers' preseason opener Friday night against the Buffalo Bills.

Newton did not participate in team drills during practice Thursday. Rivera says he'll likely make a decision after Newton meets with trainer Ryan Vermillion.

Newton had surgery on his left ankle in March. He had participated in all drills before being limited Wednesday and Thursday.

Rivera says "we want to make sure we do it right. We want to make sure he's ready to roll and he can protect himself."

Derek Anderson will start if Newton doesn't play.

Meanwhile, quarterback EJ Manuel and the Bills offense are hoping to get back on track after a 17-13 loss to the New York Giants Sunday night.

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