The Carolina Panthers have made it through their first four-day stretch of training camp -- and Cam Newton has been remarkable.
Newton finished the 2018 season two games early because of a shoulder injury, and received a second surgery on that shoulder in January. He just turned 30 years old, and his future in the NFL depended heavily on this most recent surgery.
Therefore, the biggest headline for the Panthers heading into training camp was whether Cam would be healthy or not. He's proven to be healthy, while even showing off some new mechanics.
Newton's mechanics will help him in the pocket tremendously -- but he is one of the greatest dual-threat quarterbacks to ever live. So, how should he go forward with his play style? Newton spoke with Peter King from Football Morning in America and discussed his newest approach to the game.
“This is what I do know,” Newton said. “You can look back at any type of player. You can look back at any type of sport and as a player grows, your game has to change. I remember reading and seeing a lot of clips about Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Brett Favre, even Peyton Manning to a degree. When you get old, you have to change certain things. It kind of keeps you young. I actually look forward to it."
I embrace this whole process because it’s made me feel like a rookie again. Learning certain things, learning new mechanics, focusing on the little nuances of playing a quarterback position and trying to master it. So at this point in my career, it’s not about velocity. It’s not about throwing a ball 70 yards. It’s about efficient football that’s gonna win football games.”
They also touched on the Panthers' Week 15 matchup against the New Orleans Saints -- where Carolina went in with a 6-7 record. Newton was obviously injured, but he played anyways.
“As a quarterback in this league,” Newton said, “you’re unanimously the leader, right? We needed that game. I felt as if I wanted to give my team everything that I had honestly. Being hurt, being injured … looking back at it, it probably wasn’t the smartest, efficient thing, knowing that I left it all out there on the field. And if you asked me if I’d do it again, I’d do it again. I just know my worth to this team—know how much these guys believe in me and how much I believe in them. If I’m willing to do that, and I know I’ve seen other guys do the same thing, too.”
Newton is the ultimate leader, and Amazon's 'All or Nothing' series shed light on that. He seems to be much healthier in training camp thus far -- but only time will tell if his shoulder can handle the rigorous grind of an NFL season.