Panthers linebacker Shaq Thompson was involved in a two-car wreck Sunday morning with former Duke quarterback Anthony Boone.
According to a State Highway Patrol official, Thompson was traveling south on Potter Road near Weddington at 7:45 a.m. Sunday and driving left of center. Thompson told troopers he dropped his phone on the floorboard of his 2016 Chevrolet SUV and reached down to pick it up, causing him to cross the center line.
Boone, driving a 2004 Lexus SUV, swerved left to avoid Thompson. But Thompson pulled back toward the right, and the two collided head-on, according to the incident report.
Boone was hospitalized with hand and hip injuries, according to Sgt. Ben Miller of the Highway Patrol’s Union County division. Miller said Boone was not wearing a seat belt.
Miller said Thompson, who was wearing a seat belt, also sustained injuries but declined treatment.
Thompson was cited for driving left of center but was not arrested.
Alcohol was involved but was not deemed a factor. Miller said a test showed Thompson had alcohol in his system but “was well below the legal limit” of 0.08 percent. Miller would not specify what Thompson’s blood-alcohol level was but said Thompson also passed field sobriety tests.
“He had some residual left over from the night before, but nothing where it was impairing or anything like that,” Miller said.
Authorities said the speed limit on that portion of Potter Road is 45 mph, and they do not believe speed was a factor.
Thompson had no visible injuries Monday morning, when he attended Mike Tolbert’s golf tournament at Ballantyne Country Club.
Panthers coach Ron Rivera said the team conducted its own investigation, and Thompson told the Panthers what he told the police. Rivera said the health of Boone was “the most important thing.”
“Unfortunately it’s a young guy that should not have been (dealing) with his cellphone,” Rivera said.
The Panthers drafted Thompson with the 25th overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft. He started 10 games last season at outside linebacker.
Although both have North Carolina football ties, the two apparently do not know each other.
Boone starred at Weddington High before going to Duke in 2010. He became the full-time starter for the Blue Devils in 2013 and finished his career with the most wins (19) of any quarterback in Duke history.
Boone went undrafted in 2014 and signed with Lions before being cut. He played for the Canadian Football League’s Montreal Alouettes in 2015 and was cut from the team this month.
In December, Boone joined the quarterback training group QB Country and was announced as the head of QB Country Charlotte’s training and operations.