Cornerback Josh Norman came up with two interceptions for the Panthers, one of them on Chicago's opening play and another that went 60 yards for a touchdown in the third period.
Newton threw a 3-yard scoring pass to Brandon LaFell that opened the scoring. The Carolina quarterback, however, threw an interception later in the opening quarter that rookie linebacker Jon Bostic returned 51 yards for a score.
Chicago played its first game under Coach Marc Trestman, who twice led Montreal to a championship in the Canadian Football League.
Jay Cutler threw the early interception for the Bears, but he eventually went 6-of-8 for 56 yards while playing the first period.