Despite a slow start in the first half, Cam Newton began to play like the MVP candidate he has been this season, and he led the Panthers’ comeback, as they won 20-16.
The star quarterback is the heart and soul of the Panthers, and today, it was fairly noticeable. Newton was unable to get things going in the first half, and as a result, Carolina looked out of sync in a first half where they only scored six points. But things would change drastically in the final two quarters.
The Panthers’ defensive line stepped their game up and blanked the Dolphins, who scored 16 points in the first half. Newton had a touchdown in each quarter, and the final one to TE Greg Olsen came with less than four minutes in the game on a stellar drive.
Overall, Newton’s numbers don’t look all that impressive. He totaled 174 yards (19-of-38 passes, one TD, one INT) through the air and 51 rushing on eight carries, but today, it was made clear that his importance to the franchise goes beyond than the numbers. Newton is the undisputed leader of this team, and he stepped up like he’s supposed to, leading his team to another victory on the road that could end up being key to decide a playoff seed.
Much has been talked about the Panthers’ defense this year, but there’s not enough credit given to Newton. He led his team today, and he should continue doing so for a Panthers team that is getting closer to lock a spot in the postseason.