By STEVE REED
AP Sports Writer
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Cam Newton made a successful return following ankle surgery, Jonathan Stewart ran for two touchdowns and the Carolina Panthers beat the Kansas City Chiefs 28-16 on Sunday night.
Newton completed 4 of 9 passes for 65 yards and led a pair of touchdown drives in the preseason game before exiting late in the second quarter with Carolina (1-1) up 14-6.
Stewart ran for 26 yards on four carries and made a strong case to be the Panthers’ goal-line back – if not their primary ball carrier – with scoring runs of 3 and 2 yards.
Carolina managed just a yard in on its first three possessions before Stewart provided a spark with a 17-yard run. The Panthers scored touchdowns on their next two possessions.
Alex Smith was 14 of 22 for 127 yards for Kansas City (1-1). Rookie Aaron Murray’s first NFL pass resulted in a 43-yard touchdown strike, but he also had an interception.