Cam Newton will start preseason finale

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Although the signs point to quarterback Cam Newton starting the regular-season opener for the Panthers, the Panthers have yet to commit to the first overall pick in the draft as the opening-day starter.

Newton will get a chance to make his case one more time for the job (or to lose it), when he starts the preseason finale against the Steelers.

“The big thing is to continue to see how he handles everything,” coach Ron Rivera said Saturday, via Pat Yasinskas of ESPN.com. “We have to really study him and watch him.  We have to make sure he’s progressing in the right direction.  This is a very sincere thing for us.  We don’t want to just say, ‘Hey, you’re the guy,’ and walk away from it.  At the same time, we want him to understand that he is working towards being our guy.”

It makes sense for the Panthers to give Newton a whirl.  Apart from the fact that the current trend in the NFL favors a baptism by fire, the alternatives are Jimmy Clausen and Derek Anderson.

In three preseason appearances, Newton has thrown 52 passes, connecting on 21.  That’s a completion percentage of only 40.3.  He has generated 275 yards, an average of 5.28 per attempt.  Newton has thrown no touchdown passes, and no interceptions.

Clausen has completed 17 of 29 passes for 173 yards, one touchdown, and one interception.

23 responses to “Cam Newton will start preseason finale

  1. Might as well let Newton have it. At least he’ll look good throwing an interception. He won’t have any tattoos or piercings distracting him. Clausen looks horrible when he gives up the pick six.

  2. Clausen will be a starter in the league in a few seasons, and dumping him in favor of Newton will go down as an incredibly poor decision by the Panthers.

  3. Seeing as though newton has played about 5 more quarters than clausen, that 17-29 vs newton’s 21-59 argument your trying to make isn’ a good one.. plus clausen’s last two appearances have been against 2nd and 3rd stringers

  4. Some people said the samething about Matt Leinart in Arizona… If you can’t play, you can’t play..! All of clausen’s cards have been put out in the table, I honestly don’t see any upside to him other than being a good backup

  5. shocker, jeez, i know Rivera isnt sure on Newton starting, but if he thinks the final preseason game will answer his question then i think he’s off on that. just name Newton the starter Rivera, most people know you want to.

  6. Cam’s success largely depends on how his WRs play. They’ve so far been absolutely unable to get separation, and when they do they drop the ball.

    To tight ends he is 12 of 17. He has chucked more than a few bombs to Greg Olsen and the two have connected for some astonishing plays. To wide receivers he’s 4 of 26. WTF.

    The Panthers desperately need talent at WR.

  7. 40% completion in the preseason, and he hasn’t even seen the complicated defensive schemes yet. This kid is going to get knocked around this season like he’s never experienced before. He’s the poor man’s Vince Young…at best.

  8. (from another publication)Just as we peel back the plastic film on our Stouffers when it comes to preseason games themselves the same can be said for the QB position. Again, we want to see success immediately because it helps allay our fears and validate the decisions made by the team. Unfortunately, not much we can learn here either. The NFL do not have preseason box scores available prior to 2008, but here are what some QBs since then did in preseason.
    Joe Flacco: 35/67 (52.2%), 284 yards (4.2 YPA), 1 TD, 0 INT, 68.3 rating
    Matthew Stafford: 30/55 (54.5%), 389 yards (7.1 YPA), 1 TD, 4 INT, 52.8 rating
    Josh Freeman: 22/49 (44.9%), 238 yards (4.9 YPA), 1 TD, 3 INT, 41.0 rating
    Cam Newton: 21/52 (40.3%), 275 yards (5.3 YPA), 0 TD, 0 INT, 58.2 rating
    Cam Newton is a bust… right?…

  9. It will not matter who starts if our O-Line keeps stinking it up like they are.

    New Offense
    New Defense
    Rookie QB
    Lockout shortened offseason
    Haters hoping he fails

    So may things stacked against Cam this year. If he had blonde hair I’m sure most would be giving him the benefit of the doubt.

  10. Newton seems exciting simply because you don’t know what is going to happen and he improvises when plays break down. Claussen is not great but he seems more poised in the pocket (when there actually is one) than Cam. Neither looks like they are ready to play an efficient NFL game against legit defensive schemes. A looong season is likely for the Panthers if they start either one. Both may turn into decent starters but I don’t think that will be this year

  11. southcakpanther says:
    Aug 29, 2011 8:59 AM
    So may things stacked against Cam this year. If he had blonde hair I’m sure most would be giving him the benefit of the doubt.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Claussen’s blond(ish) hair got him a ton of “benefit of the doubt” last year, huh?

  12. In three preseason appearances, Newton has thrown 52 passes, connecting on 21. That’s a completion percentage of only 40.3. He has generated 275 yards, an average of 5.28 per attempt. Newton has thrown no touchdown passes, and no interceptions.

    Clausen has completed 17 of 29 passes for 173 yards, one touchdown, and one interception.

    ———————————————————————

    Vick has completed 19 of 36 for 219 yards, 1 TD and 3 INTs. Actually 4 INTs but he got a little home-cookin’ from the refs on that last one. That’s a 45.9 passer rating. If you count that 4th INT (and you should) it would be 38.9.

  13. “the alternatives are Jimmy Clausen and Derek Anderson.” – that’s like saying “Would you like to be punched in the crotch or kicked in the crotch?” Both options nearly have equal amounts of sucktacularness. It would be foolish for Carolina to not start Newton Week 1.

  14. Cams gonna be ok. It may take a few weeks, but he’ll be fine. He has the ability to extend plays. His situation is eerily similar to josh freemans 2 years ago. As soon as he and his o line develop a mutual trust things will come together.

  15. I don’t see a respectable QB game BUT I AM FAIRLY CERTAIN THE PANTHERS WILL WIN BIG this year inspite of idiot QB’s…some outstanding players and little luck =other Panthers will make this team a winning event all 2011—-how good is my football insight? I said the same about the steelers and they still only have 3 goofy QB’s left- “Luck” made winners out of the steel franchise despite a qb who has 2 SB rings for one TD that’s right Jeff Reed put up more points than #7 WRothelisberger..(….is that Rosalind under #7 or what?)–think a moment about luck”..whence it arrives? whence it goes? nobody knows.

  16. @marilyn,

    Right luck made winners out of the steel franchise. Year after year after year. Year after Year the Steelers follow a different set of “football” rules than most of the leauge. They find and build talent. They teach great football, and they don’t pay big money to big names in free agency. They value the game, hard work, and teamwork.

    Somehow they are successful, in spite of it all.

    Doctor obvious has delivered a little bit of medication here. Try not to spit it up again.

  17. Like I’ve said before, we need a veteran QB for a while (we do have Anderson, use him) to let these rookies sit back and take it all in. Will Newtown and Clausen both excel? Of course! But I believe it will be over time. I think Newton has a lot more potential to do great things in this sport than Clausen, but his chances of doing them in his rookie season(s) is more than likely. I believe in Cam Newton, but I don’t believe his time is now.

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