After one of the best rookie seasons in NFL history for a quarterback, expectations were high from a fantasy football perspective when it came to Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton. Not only did the former No. 1 pick become the first player in NFL history to throw for 400+ yards in his first two career starts, but he finished the 2011 season with 4,051 passing yards and 21 touchdowns to go along with big numbers on the ground as well (706 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns).
With these types of numbers as a rookie, many fantasy owners used a first or second round pick on Newton as they expected him to be even better during his sophomore season–which obviously backfired as the only main statistic that increased was his total rushing yards (741). Now, the main question heading into next season will be what to expect from Newton, and whether he should be considered a top-10 quarterback in fantasy leagues next season.
Obviously, Newton has the advantage to put up more numbers compared to most quarterbacks considering what he’s capable of doing with his legs on the ground game, but fantasy owners would rather have a quarterback capable of putting up bigger numbers through the air as well–which he struggled to do in the first half of regular season. Newton could easily bounce back in 2013 and return to the dominant level we saw during his rookie season in 2011, but it’s safe to say owners won’t be using a first or second round pick on him.
In fact, it’s debatable whether or not Newton would be considered a top-10 quarterback in the league, so there’s no need to hype him up like last season.
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