Cam Newton Counted to Infinity, Twice: An NFL Preview

Let’s compare Carolina Panthers quaterback Cam Newton’s vitals to the Cyberdyne Systems Model 101 killer robot in “The Terminator.”

Newton: 6-foot-5, 245 pounds.

T-101: 6-foot-5, 897 pounds.

Their builds match exactly. Look:

See? Same diff.

I know what you’re thinking: big weight disparity. While Newton and the T-101 share identical heights and builds, the metal exoskeleton vastly outweighs the bones and tissue in the Panthers’ quarterback. But that’s why Newton is actually a better model. T-101 failed in its mission, remember, because it lacked speed. If Newton were hunting Sarah Connor, you better believe John would not have been born.

My fantasy life is in Cam Newton’s hands, after I drafted him in the first round ahead of where all the (wrong-half-the-time) experts’ mock drafts said he should go. I took him because I can see the future, and one year from now Newton will be the unanimous first overall pick, coming off an MVP season and a deep playoff run. Cam Newton is a Terminator who plays football, and recent history says he’ll be a touchdown machine this season.

Two years ago, he was the best college player any of us have ever seen. He led the proud-but-not-great Auburn football program to an undefeated record in the conference every college football fan agrees has by far the best collection of teams. The SEC’s Alabama, LSU and Florida have dominated the national-title picture for almost a decade, except for Newton’s one season playing Auburn quarterback.

Against teams flush with future NFL defenders, Newton set an SEC record for passing efficiency and led the conference in rushing yards and rushing TDs. He was the best quarterback and the best running back in college football (30 pass TDs, 20 rush TDs). And he was a winner, scoring four touchdowns against Alabama to rally Auburn back from a 24-0 deficit. Auburn went undefeated and won the national championship. Newton won the Heisman.

Last year, Newton set NFL records for passing yards by a rookie (4,051). He set the NFL record for rushing touchdowns (14) by any quarterback, ever. He was awesome, and the Panthers were markedly better than the season before. He was easily named rookie of the year.

The point here is this: Based on the pattern Cam Newton has shown as a football player (oh, he won the junior college championship the year before going to Auburn), if he doesn’t win some kind of huge award and lead his team on a great run it will be the first time in several years he didn’t elevate himself into a supreme king of football. Cam Newton is usually better than everyone else, and yet he still keeps finding ways to improve.

Late last year, the Miami Heat were playing in North Carolina against the Bobcats. Dwyane Wade hit a shot with two seconds left that gave Miami the lead. Then Wade walked toward Cam Newton, sitting courtside, and did Newton’s touchdown-celebration move, putting his fists together at his chest and then slowly spreading them apart, like Clark Kent busting out the “S” on his Superman costume. Behind Wade, LeBron James was doing the same thing with a big smile on his face.

Newton was laughing his ass off. These guys get each other. They’re part of an exclusive club. Cam Newton is going to dominate the NFL this season… and beyond.

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