FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Tom Brady, playing in an exhibition game for the first time this season, hit 8 of 12 passes for 75 yards Thursday night as the New England Patriots defeated the Carolina Panthers, 10-3.

Brady played with a skeleton crew at receiver. Julian Edelman, Josh Gordon, N’Keal Harry and Demaryius Thomas all sat out. But undrafted rookie Jakobi Meyers continued to help open the field, catching seven passes for 74 yards. Phillip Dorsett also had seven catches for 47 yards for the Patriots (3-0).

New England rookie quarterback Jarrett Stidham was 15 of 19 for 134 yards.

Carolina quarterback Cam Newton left the game in the first quarter with a foot injury that left him grimacing on the sidelines.

Newton, the 2015 MVP, was playing for the first time since Dec. 17, when the team shut him down for the last two games of the season because of shoulder fatigue that prevented him from throwing the ball downfield. He had arthroscopic surgery in January and didn’t play in the first two preseason games.

Newton appeared to be injured when he was sacked for a loss of 8 yards by Adam Butler on a third-and-10 from the Carolina 31. It was one of the two Patriots sacks while Newton was in the game.

Newton initially was evaluated on the sideline and quickly accompanied to the locker room, and didn’t return. He went 4 of 6 for 30 yards.

Kyle Allen took over at quarterback in the second quarter.

The Panthers were pretty pedestrian on offense and went three-and-out in each of their first two series.

Brady’s passes included an 18-yarder to tight end Ryan Izzo to set up the 1-yard touchdown plunge by James Develin in the second quarter. It was the starting offense’s final series.


Panthers: Offensive tackle Greg Little was evaluated for a concussion in the fourth quarter.

Patriots: Special teamer Brandon King was carted off the field with about a minute to go in the first half after helping block on a punt return. … Running back Damien Harris left in the second quarter with an undisclosed injury.


Panthers: Host Pittsburgh next Thursday.

Patriots: Host the New York Giants next Thursday.

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