Since his days at Auburn and during the lead up to the 2011 NFL Draft, Cam Newtown was blasted for seemingly having a me first, “Diva-like” attitude by some analysts within NFL circles. Cam’s rookie season performance and camaraderie with he built with his teammates did a great deal in helping shed those labels. However, Newton, according to himself, has a long way to go in order to better himself in the eyes on his teammates. Yahoo!Sports’ Jason Cole has the scoop:
“I was very immature,” Newton said when asked about his sometimes moody reaction as losses piled up. “I’ll be the first one to tell you, the pouting and the moping, I kind of overdid it. I know that. I was a bad teammate. I shut off to some people who gave unbelievable effort. … That’s where I have to mature.”
After a 24-21 loss to Minnesota in Week 8, Newton was particularly angry. Eventually, the anger started to wear on teammates because, in some small respects, Newton was missing the bigger picture.
“Cam was angry because he thought he could and should make every play,” said wide receiver Steve Smith, who somehow may have met his match in the intensity department. Like Smith, Newton is unusually high-strung in a business filled with driven people.
“He has to realize you can’t do it all yourself. It’s like when someone drops a touchdown pass at the end of a close game. You can say that play cost the team a chance to win the game, but it didn’t cause the team to lose. As you get older in this game, you see how everybody has to do their job and how there are so many plays in a game that affect the outcome. As a competitor, you want the ball in your hands at the end to make the play, but you can’t do it all in football. You have to give other people a chance to make a play for you, to help you out.”
Cam Newton will be under a lot of pressure during the 2012 season. Fans and skeptics alike will be expecting will be watching his every move. Luckily, Cam has his head on straight and is challenging himself to become a better player.