If you haven’t noticed by now, Cam Newton is the quarterback for the Carolina Panthers. He also happens to be one of the best at his position. Newton is also a unanimous pick to win the 2015 MVP Award among media analysts with a vote. The majority of his peers look at him like a god. But, there are still whispers and snide remarks about him. The dislike for Newton borders on hatred. Here’s a look at three crazy reasons some media personalities and football fans hate him.
Newton Is An African-American Quarterback
Did you think this would get swept under the already-dirty carpet? Cam Newton is excelling at a position that is historically viewed as a thinking man’s position. Most black quarterbacks are drafted and then switched to cornerback, running back, or wide receiver, depending on the need of the team. The conversion is usually done to utilize (exploit) the speed of the athlete.
The practice isn’t new. Teams have been converting black quarterbacks since the arrival of Marlin Briscoe. Colleges are running more spread offenses, and African-American quarterbacks are running them. Teams are drafting black signal-callers because of their athleticism. Defenses aren’t bulky and slow.
Newton’s ability has kept him from being switched to another position. But it’s probably something he thinks about. Newton explained, via the Charlotte Observer.
“I don’t think people have seen what I am or what I’m trying to do. I’m an African-American quarterback that may scare a lot of people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to.”
Newton has been lucky. He has the blessings of head coach Ron Rivera. Per ProFootballTalk, in 2014, Rivera brought in Joe Webb to be a backup for an injured Newton. Webb was also a converted quarterback. But Rivera liked him for his skill set. He was similar to Newton.
What most old-school fans don’t understand is Newton’s culture. He isn’t what they’ve been accustomed to seeing under center. But, everything evolves.
Hatred and ignorance has derailed the careers of more than a few talented black quarterbacks. That refusal to accept change is still around. Fans can’t see beyond the color of Newton’s skin.
He’s Having Fun
Cam Newton is actually having fun while playing football. Have you ever heard such blasphemy? In a game that is starving for something positive, Newton has managed to show a lighter side. He’s dancing and dabbin’ after touchdowns. He should be fined for that. If you believe that, you’re part of the problem.
Much of the insane hatred towards him is because the position of quarterback is “supposed” to be a solemn undertaking. A funny thing happened on the way to the center position. Carson Palmer did a crotch pump in Week 10, against the Seahawks. Did angry moms write letters of disgust? Palmer was actually praised for showing emotion.
So, why the stupidity when Newton does his little dance? It’s apparent he’s not the only dabbin’ athlete. But, it’s Cam Newton. It’s okay to criticize him.
He’s Proved His Critics Wrong
There’s nothing like a big plate of crow with a side order of salty. Newton was predicted to be the biggest bust in the 2011 draft. Where are all those haters now? There are analysts who criticized him just because of the way he looked. Five years later, Newton is set to lead the Carolina Panthers into Super Bowl 50. He’s also the hands-down favorite to walk away with the MVP Award.
For a quarterback rumored to not know how to read complex defenses, he’s done pretty well. Talking about an athlete’s skill set when he makes mistakes is normal. But predicting the downfall of a player based on color, culture, and bias is simply wrong.
Cam Newton has become a target for hatred and insane social media rants. Isn’t it time fans embraced his skills instead of disliking his culture?
[Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images]