In a move that was heavily speculated about over the offseason, the Carolina Panthers have finally made franchise player Cam Newton a team captain. It was a designation that most fans expected would already be stowed upon the team’s former number one pick, but two years into his career, he had yet to earn the honor. Most assumed it was because of his lack of experience and perceived immaturity, which was probably not far off from the truth. But heading into the 2013 season, Newton has finally earned the sought after ‘C’ patch on his jersey.
“I recognize, and everyone knows around the league, when you’re a team captain, that’s not just a patch on the jersey. You’re holding yourself to a higher standard with being accountable. I’m going about it each and every day and trying to make that happen,” said the Panthers quarterback.
Well, that’s great that Newton is ‘trying’ to make it happen, but that’s not good enough. The time for moping is over for the third-year QB. No more should fellow players and fans have to see Newton sulking on the sidelines with a towel over his head. He cannot continue to isolate himself from teammates and pout if thing aren’t going his way. That’s not what leaders do and it’s certainly not what team captains do.
Obviously, the Panthers must have felt Newton had turned the corner in his battle to grow up as a football player to vote him a team captain. It will be interesting to see how he responds to the honor this season, which gets underway just three days from now.