When the Panthers went and chose Cam Newton with the first overall pick, they were making the pick based on what they had seen in action and what many had projected. Now it is time for the first overall pick to come in and learn how to be a professional quarterback. It will be interesting to see how the Panthers play Newton. Will they bring him along slowly and let Jimmy Clausen handle the duties early, or do they throw the young man to the wolves and let him get baptism by fire against the deceptive NFL defenses?
Newton is a superior athlete and if Carolina does put him out there, expect them to do a lot of running the ball early in the year. I suspect you will see a lot of three and five step drops and some play action similar to the way the Steelers played when forced to throw Ben Roethlisberger to the wolves. Make no mistake about it, Newton can be a good one, but expecting him to be great right out of the box is a mistake for any fan to make.
This season will be filled with ups and downs as he learns his way around the field and the game starts to slow down a little bit for him. The speed of the game is crazy on this level and it takes everyone time to adjust. Peyton Manning and Troy Aikman are both examples of how its not easy as both struggled to win and both had far more interceptions than touchdowns as rookies.
The fans will have to be patient as Cam suits up. He will give you some things to cheer about and he will make some mistakes that will be typical of a rookie. The good news is that he does still have Steve Smith to throw too. Smith deciding to stay, along with the resigning of DeAngelo Williams makes the offensive skill positions a lock. Now getting that inside sured up on offense and defense will keep the Panthers in contention even with a rookie at quarterback.
Newton will have his struggles as most rookies, but let's be clear.... "He is not a Jamarcus Russell"... Jamarcus had talent but he was lazy. There is nothing about Cam Newton's physique that says lazy (no homo). You don't look like that by accident. That is a sign of working hard.
What he did in college is a thing of the past. The good and the bad. None of it matters to me. What he does going forward will be what will define his legacy. I hope he can become what his potential will allow. I always cheer for the guys who people doubt. Maybe he can show people like Tebow did last year that if given a chance I can be good. I can lead. I can win.
Stay Breezy ~ I'm Out!