Jordan Norwood

NFL season begins with same issues _ hits to the head

The start of a new season rekindled some old — and troubling — issues for the NFL.

Nobody could attest to that better than Cam Newton.

The Carolina Panthers quarterback was victimized by helmet-to-helmet hits at least three times in a 21-20 loss to the Denver Broncos on Thursday night. Net result of those hits: Zero penalty yards.

The Super Bowl rematch was every bit as good as promised — it came down to a last-second field goal attempt — but it was a brutal affair that put Newton, Broncos receiver Jordan Norwood and linebacker Brandon Marshall in evaluation for concussions. None were held out.

"It's not fun getting hit in the...