So I was thinking, Cam Newton has all the tools to be the greatest football player of all-time. The guy I think about most when it comes to Cam's potential is Damon Allen. Who the hell is that? you might ask. He is Marcus Allen's brother and he played in Canada. Obviously, if he played in the NFL, he wouldn't have been as successful. But let's look at my comparison between him, Cam, and other greats.
Damon Allen ran for almost 12,000 yards as a QB. His passing numbers are obscene like most of the best CFL QBs, but he stands out to me for his running. I mean, he has 72,000 yards passing, but Brett Favre in the CFL would be closing in on six figures. He also had over 50 rushign TDs, again, in the CFL. Cam is the guy who can get it done year in and year out running and throwing. But why do I say he can be the best ever?
Well, for starters, you need certain physical tools to be the best ever. He has the size, the strength, and solid throwing mechanics, including a quick release and a nice deep ball. I think only one other QB has ever come out of college with greater physical tools than Cam, and that guy is Michael Vick. Vick could have been the best ever if his talent was matched to Peyton Manning's preparation, Drew Brees' resiliency, Tim Tebow's work ethic, and Jake Delhomme's leadership. That's right, I said Tebow and Delhomme in a sentence about greatness. Well Vick decided not to work that hard until after two years in prison and his 30th birthday. Cam has the physical tools to be an elite pocket passer, as good as any passer in the league, if he puts in the work. ANd he's only 21 years old. I'm not talking about working hard enough to be the starter. I mean, if you wanna be the best of all-time, you have to put in Jerry Rice like effort. I think Cam is already doing that.
His running is another factor altogether. If you look at Vick's best years, not including last year, they were his best years because of his legs. Cam will probably have one or two 100-yard rushing games a year. When you look at video highlights of John Elway and Steve Young, you always see a couple good runs in there - Young running without a helmet and Elway spinning in the air, and landing in the endzone in the Superbowl. Cam will have memorable runs every two or three games.
Then there is the talent around them. When you look at the greatest QBs since Dan Fouts, they've had serious talent around them. Manning had Marshall Faulk for a year, and then Edge James. Kurt Warner had Faulk, Holt, Bruce, and Orlando Pace. Montana had Rice, Roger Craig, and Hall of Famers on defense like Ronnie Lott. Cam is surrounded by talent. Cam coming to the Panthers reminds me of the anomaly that was the Spurs getting the 1st pick in the NBA lottery and picking Tim Duncan to play alongside David Robinson. We've talked about this before, but this is ridiculous. Cam Newton with Gross, Kalil, Shockey, Smitty, D-Will, Stew, Goodson, and Beason. Those are the primetime Pro Bowl guys. Then there's still Gettis, LaFell (listed by BR to be a breakout receiver in 2011), Wharton, Otah, CJ, TD, etc. You see where this is going. It's almost unfair to add Cam. This team is more talented, IMO, on every aspect of the team than the 2008 team that went 12-4.
The only thing missing just hasn't happened yet, and that's winning. We've made predictions about this upcoming year, and how Cam will play as a rookie. But we know that however he plays, if he continues to work, he'll get better. And the winning in Carolina is inevitable.
After the winning comes the awards. Tell me you don't see some NFL MVPs in his future. That's what I thought. Imagine Cam running for 115 yards a 2 TDs, and throwing for 250 yards and 2 TDs, in the Superbowl. It's more likely than you think.
So I think Cam is a guy who throws like Rothlisberger, Freeman, and Culpepper. He'll have some 3500 yards, 3o TD seasons. Culpepper once had 10 rushing TDs in one year. Cam will average about 3,000 yds passing, 25 TDs, and 700 yards rushing and 8 TDs a season for about 10 years before he starts to slow down. So if he retires with 40,000 yards passing, 300 TDs, 8,000 yards rushing and 50 TDs, and has three or four NFL MVPs and at least 2 Superbowl MVPs, would that be enough to call him the greatest of all-time?