In the words of the great Deion Sanders, “Cam: Whooooa, Cam!”
He is at it again ladies and gentlemen. Another week, another press conference that ends up flooding your Twitter feed for the wrong reasons.
Coming off of a 17-3 loss to the Bears on Sunday where Cam went 21/34 for 211 yards with two interceptions and a fumble, Newton was already in no mood for the media. While the offense struggled substantially in Chicago, it did not help the Panthers chances that two of Newtons turnovers resulted in Bears touchdowns as safety Eddie Jackson housed both scores for 75+ yard scores.
Everything was going per usual in Cam’s latest press conference until the consistency of the Panthers offense was put into question.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 25, 2017
Of course, this is not the first time this season that Newton has been put on blast for his actions during a press conference. In week five Cam was scrutinized by football fans and general public alike for his derogatory comments suggesting that it was funny to hear a woman reporter “talking about routes.” This was put to rest (but not forgotten or forgiven by any means) when Cam, after getting a lot more flack than he could have ever anticipated, posted an apology video on his Twitter.
But, the former MVP could not help himself. When put in a situation when he has not gotten his way (aka coming off of a loss where we played poorly), Newton has consistently shown that he cannot handle being questioned by the media.
Cam Newton: “It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes.”
— Max Marcilla (@MMarcilla98) October 4, 2017
For argument’s sake, let’s take the devil’s advocate approach and suggest that Cam has a right to not answer questions during a press conference. He is human and we all have bad days at the office. While being disrespectful to an entire gender, implying the legitimacy of their profession based off of a question should never be tolerated, it could be argued that Newton has the right to answer any question how he sees fit. This take would make a good case for any NFL player who was not a quarterback with the pedigree of Cam Newton.
Along with winning the MVP in 2015, Newton was also the Rookie of the Year in 2011. In his historic 2015 season, Cam led what was thought to be a pedestrian Carolina offense to the Super Bowl where they were simply overpowered by an exceptional Denver Broncos defense that contributed to Peyton Manning’s second ring. Now, in his seventh year in the league, the 28-year-old should be looking to separate himself from the pack of other quarterbacks in the NFL who have had success, but never fall into that elite category.
The jury is still out for Cam, despite his accomplishments, and demonstrating this poor behavior with the media tarnishes his legacy more than he truly understands.
Panthers statement re: Cam Newton walking out of press conference. pic.twitter.com/AU3pGNKqEm
— Andrew Siciliano (@AndrewSiciliano) October 25, 2017
You don’t see Tom Brady or Aaron Rogers constantly scrutinized for how they conduct themselves in the media. While Cam supporters and the National Champion himself would most likely disagree, part of being a professional is conducting yourself as such on and off the field.
All NFL players are obligated per their contracts to abide to a certain amount of time spent answering media questions. In 2014 Marshawn Lynch infamously repeated incessantly “I’m just here so I won’t get fined” during a press conference. While Lynch does not have a good track record of professionalism with the media, he has set the standard for the absolute bare minimum for how to handle the media. Newton has to put on his big boy pants and find a way to grind out press conferences, without offending people, if he wants to be recognized as one of the true elite players and ambassadors of the NFL.