Carolina Panthers star Cam Newton has come under fire for a seemingly sexist reply directed at a female reporter on Wednesday.
When Newton fielded a question about wide receiver Devin Funchess, he gave a 35-second answer on the growth his Panthers team-mate has made from last year to this NFL season.
But before Newton answered the question from Charlotte Observer reporter Jourdan Rodrigue, the Panthers quarterback said it was "funny" to hear a "female" ask about routes.
The entire question from Rodrigue was: "I know you take a lot of pride in seeing your receivers play well. Devin Funchess has seemed to really embrace the physicality of his routes and getting those extra yards. Does that give you a little bit of enjoyment to see him truck-sticking people?"
Before giving his answer, however, Newton said, "It's funny to hear a female talk about routes like that. It's funny."
Rodrigue was not amused, tweeting afterwards: "I don't think it's 'funny' to be a female and talk about routes. I think it's my job."
In response to another reporter's tweet about the exchange, Rodrigue added: "I spoke with him after and it was worse. I chose not to share, because I have an actual job to do today and one he will not keep me from."
Panthers spokesman Steven Drummond released a statement to NFL Media, saying he spoke with Rodrigue and Newton and the two had a conversation in which the 2015 MVP and three-time Pro Bowler "expressed regret for using those words."
"We strive as a department to make the environment for media comfortable for everyone covering the team," the statement concluded.
The Association for Women in Sports Media said it was "very discouraged" by Newton's "disrespectful remarks and actions."
|Knicks top Thunder in Anthony´s return to New York|
|Chiefs too good for Chargers, Lions win|
|Packers activate Rodgers for Panthers clash|
|Gonzalez bids emotional farewell to Dodgers|
|Carmelo Anthony ready for MSG return, calls New York ´home´|
|Reggie Bush ´done´ with NFL career|
|Embiid gets last word after verbal altercation with Westbrook|
|Westbrook´s triple-double powers Thunder past 76ers|
|Rangers acquire Moore from Giants|
|Celtics´ Hayward open to returning this season|
|Bills QB Taylor to start v Dolphins|
|Kristaps Porzingis injury update: Knicks big man says knee ´shouldn´t´ be bad|
|LeBron´s 59th triple-double leads Cavaliers past Lakers|
|Jets offensive coordinator admits surrender in blowout loss to Broncos|
|Osweiler helps Broncos past Colts|
|Siemian suffers shoulder injury, Osweiler in for Broncos|
|Steelers LB Shazier has begun rehabilitation process|
|Giants president Mara wants Manning back for 2018|
|Thunder lift George in return to Indiana, Celtics bounce back|
|George has ´closure´ as Pacers continue to rise|
|Rodgers ´not coming back to save´ Packers|
|Angels manager Scioscia has no concerns about Ohtani´s elbow|
|Monaco stay unbeaten, Ludwigsburg crush PAOK|
|Jaguars formula the key to playoff success for Wentz-less Eagles|
|Mavs spoil Leonard´s season debut, LeBron enjoys career-high night|
|Packers star Rodgers cleared to return against Panthers|
|You can put the kickoff back at the 30 – Hester announces retirement|
|Roberts confirms Dodgers were ´very in tune´ with Stanton, Ohtani|
|Fleury set for Golden Knights return after two months in concussion protocol|
|Dodgers All-Star Seager set to avoid elbow surgery|
|Pierre leads Dinamo Sassari past Pinar Karsiyaka|
|Spurs list Leonard as probable for season debut|
|Dolphins stun Brady and Patriots|
|Rodgers return a medical decision for Packers|
|Stanton rips ´unprofessional´ and ´circus times´ with Marlins|
|Stanton excited to step into ´winning environment´ with Yankees|
|Irving to miss Bulls game with quad injury|
|Jets QB McCown´s season over with broken hand|
|Eagles QB Wentz out for season with torn ACL|
|Yankees confirm Stanton deal|
|Road to Super Bowl hits speed bump as Eagles sweat on Wentz fitness|
|Oladipo´s career performance keeps Pacers rolling|
|Suspended Smith-Schuster watches on in Steelers helmet|
|Pederson unwilling to comment on Wentz amid ACL fears|
|Fitzgerald now third all time in receiving yards|
|Eagles QB Wentz suffers knee injury|
|Texans QB Savage suffers concussion; brief return sparks controversy|
|Snow joke! Bills and Colts play in brutal blizzard|
|Josh Gordon scores first touchdown in four years|
|LeBron leads shorthanded Cavaliers past 76ers|
|Beal, Wizards seething after ´tough s***´ loss to Clippers|
|Angels intend to use Ohtani as a two-way player|
|It´s a different style - Durant on the Warriors without Curry|
|Irving thought three-point miss in Celtics-Spurs was ´cash money´|
|Warriors top Pistons without Curry, Cavs and Celtics lose|
|Bears´ Miller shares emotional story behind horrific leg injury|
|´My job is to piss him off´ - Ndamukong Suh on facing Tom Brady|
|Carmelo Anthony aware he´s in worst offensive stretch of his career|
|Marlins slugger Stanton rejects trade to Giants|
|Ingram game-winner drowns Simmons triple-double|
|Falcons stay in playoff hunt with win over Saints|
|Watt headlines nominees for Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award|
|Hurricanes owner agrees to sell, NHL commissioner says team won´t move|
|NHL to accept $650million Seattle expansion application|
|76ers send Jahlil Okafor to Nets|
|Eagles star Zach Ertz passes concussion protocol|
|MLB trade news: Mariners acquire Dee Gordon from Marlins|
|Ryan Shazier injury update: Steelers LB undergoes spinal stabilisation surgery|
|LeBron leads Cavs to 13th straight victory, Warriors win without Curry|
|Goff, Wentz excited to play each other for first time|