Cam Newton has received plenty of endorsements along the way to leading the Carolina Panthers to the Super Bowl. Now Cam Newton has to chance to defeat Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos in the biggest game of the year, and dethrone him as the face of the NFL.
Marketing columnist Cheryl Hall of the Dallas Morning News believes that the new representation of the NFL could be decided by Cam Newton’s performance in Super Bowl 50. Here is how it would work.
In victory, Cam Newton becomes the natural predecessor to supplant Peyton Manning as the active face of the league. Not even a loss could derail what seems destined to happen, but everyone loves a winner. Any campaign with Cam Newton would be elevated if he is a Super Bowl-winning quarterback. As the potential success would help him, so it would aid the NFL.
With the conversation of retirement looming for Manning, the league will need someone to carry the torch. Peyton Manning will still do many of his endorsement deals, including Papa John’s, DirecTV, Nationwide and others. He is a perfect pitchman due to his charisma and every man personality, but if he is going to retire, the NFL will want to have an active player present and accounted for.
The Houston Texans’ J.J. Watt would be one possible pitchman among active players who can take over the mantle as the face of the NFL. He has a similar charm and personality of Peyton Manning, but at this stage he has not played in a Super Bowl. That is where Cam Newton comes in.
Being a quarterback also helps Cam Newton’s case.
In football, the most important person on a team is the one who calls the signals. Quarterbacks are usually the most visible player on a team because he, out of all of the positional players, is the one who has to face the hordes of media during victory and defeat. Quarterbacks have to answer all of the questions. In the case of Cam Newton, if he has a great game and the Carolina Panthers are victorious, he will receive a ton of praise.
After a loss, all eyes are still on him. The questions become: how did Cam handle the defeat? What about his body language during the post game press conference? As the face of the Carolina Panthers, how they are received primarily lies on how Cam Newton conducts himself. It works the same way as the face of the NFL.
It takes a great amount of patience to handle the responsibility of being the face of an organization. One is scrutinized for everything they do.
For instance, it was just a few days ago when Cam Newton responded to a reporter’s question regarding the possibility of being the LeBron James of the NFL, courtesy of Fox Sports. Newton did not hesitate to reverse the narrative by asking the reporter, “why can’t LeBron be the Cam Newton of power forwards?” Because what Cam Newton says does create a stir at times, the word got back to LeBron James, who downplayed the comments of the Panthers’ QB.
What we can take from the exchange is that Cam Newton is brimming with confidence and he is not ashamed to admit it.
Cam Newton is also a trend-setter when it comes to fashion. His much talked about wardrobe for Monday, which included a pair of gold and zebra-print Versace pants could have shut down Twitter. His pants were a win-win for Versace, which saw the $849 pair of pants sell-out in just hours after the photos of Cam Newton sporting them went viral.
Mark Anthony Green of GQ took notice immediately.
“That’s the gaudiest pair of pants that Cam has ever worn. I think he chose to wear them when all eyes were on him. That’s really important.
“Cam knows people are talking about the way he dresses. He knows, like, ‘Ah, man, these pants are crazy, this will be a moment.’ He leads into the week with that, which I think is really smart for him.”
It took confidence and charisma to make wearing the Versace pants work. That is what will propel Cam Newton as the face of the NFL also.
Notoriety will always move the needle. Cam Newton’s penchant for doing the “Dab” makes him the player that teams will want to keep out of the endzone, so amongst the remaining 31 teams, he is the villain, much like LeBron James is to the NBA. This is in spite of having a likable personality. The NFL is ready to capitalize on Cam Newton’s status around the league, with hopes that he can replace Peyton Manning in a seamless transition.
Cam Newton is already a hot topic in the NFL, but he is set to supplant Peyton Manning as the face of the league, just as long as he can win the Super Bowl.
[Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images]