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Cam Newton responding well to adversity

Carolina Panthers quarterback Newton celebrates his touchdown against the Philadelphia Eagles during their NFL game in Philadelphia Reuters

The Panthers got more from quarterback Cam Newton Monday night, by asking him to do less.

That it took until Nov. 26 to figure it out is part of the reason they’re 3-8, and changes are on the way this offseason despite last night’s 30-22 win over the Eagles.

Newton’s going to be part of the future, and he showed why Monday — throwing for 306 yards (the first time he’s topped 300 in a win), accounting for all four Panthers touchdowns (two passing, two running).

Panthers coach Ron Rivera said his staff has pulled some things back, streamlining things for his second-year quarterback.

“The thing is we put a lot on his plate early in the year and we’ve taken some of it back. He’s reacted to that very well,” Rivera said, via Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer. “We’re starting to find the balance that we need with him; the last few weeks he’s been outstanding. He’s given us chances to win, and this is the first time we as a team took advantage of it.”

While there’s a (justified) sense of impending doom for Rivera and a staff that’s 1-11 in games decided by a touchdown or less, Newton’s going to be part of the future in Carolina. That’s why watching his reaction to adversity is far more important than watching his reaction to tweaks in a game plan implemented by people he won’t be working for much longer.

Monday was a step.

“He’s leading the team. He’s on the sidelines talking with the O-line, talking with receivers. He’s doing the things we all wanted him to do. In the huddle, he’s saying the right things,” veteran left tackle Jordan Gross said. “And I’ll tell you what, the guy’s a tough guy because he takes some shots and he gets up and keeps on swinging.

“If he can play this way and lead like he is, the sky’s the limit for him.”

That’s part of the reason the Panthers had high expectations this season, and offers a degree of hope for the future.

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10 Responses to “Cam Newton responding well to adversity”
  1. sportsmeccabi says: Nov 27, 2012 7:54 AM

    Cam was not the problem with this team, his supporting cast isn’t helping him, mainly his offensive line.

    Plus the schedule this year has been brutal. We finally had an easy game.

  2. truthfactory says: Nov 27, 2012 8:06 AM

    He’s responded well in adversity??? Hasnt he been pouting like a baby after losses all season? And now they beat a pathetic eagles team and thats now called “responding well to adversity”??

    If they lose again and he responds better than in the past, then maybe that would be “better”. But I dont see how winning a game against the eagles means that he’s responded well to adversity. They were bound to win a game again… If they win their next 5 in a row or something, then maybe we can make something of it. To me, this was a win against a very bad football team. Nothing more…

  3. Kaz says: Nov 27, 2012 8:31 AM

    He’s never a problem when he wins a game. It’s the way he “responds” when he’s losing that gets him in trouble.

  4. 4thqtrsaint says: Nov 27, 2012 8:42 AM

    So, as long as he plays a bad defense, with a simplified game plan & he can pretend he’s Superman, the sky’s the limit? Suddenly we can all see the rosy & bright future for him? I know he can be good, but he has to be the same guy when he loses. Talk to players on the sideline, looking over plays, etc. Do that when they’re down against a good team, then I’ll believe in Cam.

  5. jgedgar70 says: Nov 27, 2012 8:57 AM

    Wow, this post has been up for an hour and a half and there aren’t any “Cam Newton Is The Most Evil Human Being That Ever Lived” comments. I’m surprised.

    A lot of people talk about Cam and our offense as if the step back is purely because defenses have figured it out. Some of that is true, but I think Rob Chudzinski read too much of his own press in the offseason and got the big head, and he’s been trying to be way too cute with the play-calling. There was even too much of that in this game. Cam will be an All-Pro every year if we can find the right coach that can fully utilize him.

  6. xofootballer says: Nov 27, 2012 9:02 AM

    Adversity? His response/performance last night was not to adversity. It was a response to a defense that was so out it it that they refused to cover WR’s. not poor coverage – didn’t cover them.
    I saw nothing in last night’s game that makes me think Newton is a viable starting QB in this league. Not all his fault – he could not prove his worth against a defense that has quit.
    Still, to claim there is a shining light for Newton or this team – well, just watch the remainder of the season.

  7. finsphan says: Nov 27, 2012 10:55 AM

    of course, they win a game and all of a sudden he is the best qb again. they just beat the worst team in the nfl and had a hard time doing that. scam had accuracy issues missing easy targets all night especially on third down, and the DEFENSE got them the ball 3 times in their own side of the field… but somehow scam gets all the credit. unbelievable. they win, it’s scam newton,they lose, it’s the rest of the teams fault.

  8. rcali says: Nov 27, 2012 2:51 PM

    I’m just glad he always gives the first down signal when he makes one because sometimes it’s hard to tell.

  9. Uncle Charlie says: Nov 27, 2012 6:18 PM

    Negatives: Played in a simplified, run-first, dive-option read offense with very basic high-low reads. Worked exclusively out of the gun and was very quick to run at the first flash of coverage. Limited field vision — does not process the passing game. Inconsistent throwing mechanics with a flick delivery — generates all of his power from his upper-body strength and too often arms the ball. Streaky passer with spotty accuracy. Makes his receivers work hard and throws into coverage. Does not spin a tight spiral. Very disingenuous — has a fake smile, comes off as very scripted and has a selfish, me-first makeup. Always knows where the cameras are and plays to them. Has an enormous ego with a sense of entitlement that continually invites trouble and makes him believe he is above the law — does not command respect from teammates and always will struggle to win a locker room. Only a one-year producer. Lacks accountability, focus and trustworthiness — is not punctual, seeks shortcuts and sets a bad example. Immature and has had issues with authority. Not dependable.

    Summary: An extremely talented, dual-threat QB who carried Auburn to a national title, Newton has the arm and athletic talent desired in a rollout, play-action, bootleg vertical passing game and would fit ideally into an offense such as that of the Redskins or Raiders. However, he always will test the rules, be difficult to manage and lacks the intangibles to win the trust of a locker room. Will require a very strong-willed, demanding coach to live up to his potential and avoid the trappings of fame and fortune, but even the greatest taskmaster will not be able to keep away the drama that is still swirling from a stained Heisman Trophy and littered recruiting trail that Newton left in the SEC. Can provide an initial spark, but will quickly be dissected and contained by NFL defensive coordinators, struggle to sustain success and will not prove worthy of an early investment. An overhyped, high-risk, high-reward selection with a glaring bust factor, Newton is sure to be drafted more highly than he should and could foreclose a risk-taking GM’s job and taint a locker room.

  10. getitrightnowkarl says: Nov 28, 2012 10:02 PM

    In reply to Uncle charlie: You are the epitome of “if you can’t dazzle them with brillance, baffle them with B.S.. You articulated nothing. Although you are extremely inaccurate with your perception of Cam Newton, I do give you credit for your incredible exaggeration. If we were to believe all the things you stated about Cam, it would be impossible to accomplish the things he’s already has. Your analogies makes no sense. There’s no way you could win a national title and set NFL records, with the lack of talent and intelligence you give him. If he was as bad as you claim, he wouldn’t even be in the NFL. It’s very clear that you have a very disturbing dislike for Cam.

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