When the Carolina Panthers drafted Cam Newton with the first overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, it was seen as risky. While Newton proved at Auburn that he was a unique talent, he also showed over his years in college that he was also unpredictable. Thanks to recent comments Newton has made to the press, including last night after his team won a game, fans have to wonder if he is talking his way out of Carolina.
Cam Newton’s History
Cam Newton started his career in college with the Florida Gators. He was a member of the Gators team in 2007 and 2008 and backed up Tim Tebow. However, ESPN reported back in 2008 that Newton was arrested for stealing a laptop from another student. No charges ended up filed against Newton, but he announced his transfer anyway to try for a fresh start.
After a year in junior college, where he led Blinn College to an NJCAA National Championship, he joined Auburn in 2010. He led Auburn to a National Championship by beating the Oregon Ducks and won the Heisman Trophy over Andrew Luck that year.
However, while he was exciting to watch on the field, ESPN reported the NCAA started an investigation into allegations that his father sought money in exchange for Cam Newton playing for a major college team. There were no penalties against Auburn, but it further tainted the image of Cam Newton.
Cam Newton’s Recent Controversies
Cam Newton has been a star for the Carolina Panthers but has started to struggle somewhat in recent seasons following injuries. After throwing 35 touchdowns and running for 10 more in 2015, he only threw 19 and ran for five last season.
However, it isn’t his on-field performance that hurts him right now. On October 5, Forbes reported that an incident where Cam Newton joked that he never expected a female reporter to be knowledgeable about football cost him a major sponsor in Dannon, who represents Oikos Greek yogurt. Dannon’s Michael Neuwirth commented on why they dumped Cam Newton.
“We are shocked and disheartened at the behavior and comments of Cam Newton towards Jourdan Rodrigue, which we perceive as sexist and disparaging to all women.”
However, that was not quite as damaging as recent comments Cam Newton has made about his own team. The Carolina Panthers have struggled in the passing game, and they are eliminating targets instead of adding new ones.
During the NFL trade deadline rush, the Carolina Panthers traded Cam Newton’s best receiver, Kelvin Benjamin, to the Buffalo Bills. Newton took to Twitter and said he didn’t understand the trade. He then said during a press conference that the Panthers can’t replace Benjamin in their lineup.
The most damaging statement came after the Carolina Panthers win over the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday. Cam Newton compared the Panthers to the Titanic, a sinking ship. While some called it a slip-up and a mistake, there has to be some thought that Cam Newton might be talking his way right out of Carolina.
[Featured Image by Bob Leverone/AP Images]