Falcons' Damontae Kazee ejected after hitting Cam Newton late

ATLANTA -- Atlanta Falcons safety Damontae Kazee was ejected for unnecessary roughness at 12:14 of the second quarter after a helmet hit on Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.

As Newton slid to the ground, Kazee dove low and made helmet contact with Newton, causing Newton to go to the sideline momentarily to be checked by the medical staff. Panthers wide receiver Torrey Smith then went after Kazee, but Smith was not ejected. Smith did receive an unnecessary roughness penalty to offset Kazee's.

Kazee was in the starting lineup Sunday after the Falcons lost starting strong safety Keanu Neal to a season-ending ACL tear. Kazee actually started at free safety, with starting free safety Ricardo Allen moving over to strong safety.

Jordan Richards entered the game after Kazee got ejected.

Kazee was flagged for two helmet infractions during the preseason.