NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 07: Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers walks off the field after his team was defeated by the New Orleans Saints during the NFC Wild Card playoff game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 7, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

NFL launching investigation into handling of hit that forceed Cam Newton out of a playoff game

This doesn't sound good.

The NFL is launching an investigation into whether or not the Carolina Panthers followed proper concussion protocol with quarterback Cam Newton, the NFL announced on Monday.

"A joint review by the NFL and NFLPA of the application of the Concussion Protocol following the tackle of Mr. Newton during the Panthers-Saints game is underway. According to the policy developed by the NFL and NFLPA, if the Concussion Protocol is not properly followed the club is subject to discipline."

Newton was hit in the head by New Orleans Saints defensive tackle David Onyemata with about nine minutes to go in the game and then fell to the ground as he attempted to jog off the field. Newton was cleared in a medical tent on the sidelines to return to the game and only missed one play following the hit. He said following the game that he suffered an eye injury on the play and that his head was fine.

The team could be fined if the league determines the proper steps were not taken following the hit. The Seattle Seahawks were fined $150,000 this season after the league determined they failed to apply the proper protocol following a hit to quarterback Russell Wilson.

The league has taken a strong stance on injuries and hits to the head or neck area recently and will not tolerate teams not following the proper protocol when dealing with these sort of hits.

(h/t Pro Football Talk)