Cam Newton’s sophomore season in the NFL had ups and downs and the 23-year-old signal caller told the NFL Network on Tuesday that he is motivated to become a better player.
Newton’s motivation is provided in part by the success of last year’s crop of quarterbacks.
“I’m a fan of those guys. Colin Kaepernick, I got an opportunity to know him well; we were roommates at the combine when we were coming out. RG III, he’s won the Heisman. Andrew Luck — those guys came in this league and took it by storm. Am I envious? No,” Newton said. “If anything it challenges me to get better and just remember about this league that if you’re not getting better, you’re getting forgotten.”
In 2011 Newton was the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year after throwing for 4,051 yards and scoring 35 touchdowns. Last season his numbers dropped to 3,869 with 27 total touchdowns but so did his interceptions from 17 to 12.
He said he’s spent this offseason challenging himself to lose weight and “to become not a stronger player, but a smarter player.”
Newton currently is listed at 245 pounds.
Last year the Panthers finished 7-9 after winning five of their last six games. If Newton and the Panthers play like they did to finish the season there is no reason to believe that they will not contend in the NFC South even with the improvements of the Saints and Buccaneers and the talented roster of the Falcons.