Fact or Fiction: Time to Call Cam Newton Overrated?
Before I can diverge whether or not I believe Cam Newton is overrated, I must first set the stage. Cam Newton was drafted as the first overall pick in 2011 by the Carolina Panthers in which he finished as the 2011 AP Offensive Rookie of the Year. Being the overall number one pick and taking home rookie of the year, Cam Newton quickly became a face of the NFL. Expectations as a face of the NFL are high and will be judged as such.
Throughout Cam’s career, he has met or exceeded those expectations at times. Most have come as an abled, big-bodied, and mobile quarterback that does a lot with his legs. Going into his ninth season now, Newton has not yet developed into a consistent pocket passer. After season four or five the developmental stages are over. His career completion percentage is tied for 51st all-time at 59.7%. Names such as Marcus Mariota, Chad Pennington, Andy Dalton, and Joe Flacco all rank significantly higher. In all-time passer rating, he is tied for 30th with an 86.4. Kirk Cousins, Marcus Mariota, Jeff Garcia, and Andy Dalton all best him here. Most have or would say generally that Cam is better than all of the quarterbacks listed above.
Expectations vs Reality
What’s loved and talked about Cam is that he is big, mobile, and charismatic. Fans and analysts tend to focus on 2013, 2015, and 2018 seasons when coming to his defense. These are by far his three best seasons including MVP honors in 2015. Throughout these three seasons, Cam threw 83 touchdowns to 36 interceptions. In 2017, the Panthers selected Christian McCaffery 8th overall which helped Newton’s numbers in 2018 with the development of McCaffery as a runner and pass-catcher out of the backfield.
What’s not focused on is five out of eight seasons, he has thrown for 99 touchdowns to a soaring 71 interceptions. Cam has also only made the Pro-Bowl three times (2011, 2013, 2015) and an All-Pro nod once in 2015. Also, “Superman” has only accumulated three playoff wins in eight years, with two of those wins coming in the 2015-2016 playoffs.
Cam has widely been known in past seasons as a face of the NFL and a top-10 quarterback. That is until recently this year when the players themselves voted on the annual NFL Top 100 Players list. Newton was ranked 87th overall and 14 of 15 among quarterbacks. The players themselves are saying that he is more of a middle-tier quarterback than he is a top tier.
I myself am not saying that Cam is not a good or viable quarterback. What I am saying, is that for all the hype, overall draft selection, and accolades we give him, Cam has underachieved. I feel comfortable in saying that Cam Newton is a good solid quarterback who should be a starter. When it comes to being labeled overrated, I’m positive this is fact and not fiction.
For more on sports come join us on our forums!