FanPost

Cam Newton compared to the NFLs elite QBs.


We all know that Cam Newton had one of the best seasons ever for a rookie. However, I’ve seen a lot of people dismissing what he did on the basis of saying that he either didn’t score enough touchdowns, or that he turned the ball over too much.

I was talking with a friend of mine who doesn't think Newton is any good at all, and was saying that Roethlisberger was a much better QB. I looked up the stats and realized that Roethlisberger has never thrown as many TDs as Newton had, and that in 3 of the last 6 seasons committed more turnovers.
Now, I don't consider Roethlisberger as an elite QB, but he is widely considered a very good QB.

From that, I wondered how Newton would compare against the best QBs in the league. I think that pretty much everyone who is a football buff recognizes that Manning, Brees, and Brady have been the consistent top 3 QBs for the past 10 years or so.

I’ve averaged the totals for these QBs over the course of their careers, minus the seasons where they were injured and did not have significant playing time.

I was more than a little bit surprised at the results. I did not expect Newton to stack up nearly so well against the other QBs.

Name

Total Yards

Completion percentage

YPA

TD

INT

Fumbles lost

Cam Newton

4,757

60.0

7.8

35

17

2

Peyton Manning

4,272

64.9

7.6

32

15

1.4

Drew Brees

4,131

65.9

7.4

28.8

14.6

2.7

Tom Brady

4,069

63.8

7.4

31

11.5

3.4

It was very interesting to me to see that Newton averaged more yards per attempt than any QB on this list, as well as averaging more TDs. His completion percentage is below every one of the other QBs, but this could indicate that he's throwing it downfield more, and a lower completion percentage should be expected on that.
I was really surprised that Manning and Brees averaged that many INTs.

Someone might say that just looking at the average of the other QBs seasons don't tell the story, and that Manning throwing 28 INTs in one season skews his INT totals, so here are the number of seasons where the other QBs surpassed or fell short of Newtons stats in his rookie season.

Name

Seasons over 4,757 total yards

Seasons under 4,757 total yards

Seasons with 35 or more TDs

Seasons with less than 35 TDs

Seasons with 17 or more INTs

Seasons with under 17 INTs

Seasons with 2 or more lost fumbles

Seasons with under 2 lost fumbles

Peyton Manning

0

13

2

11

4

9

5

8

Drew Brees

2

8

2

8

3

7

7

3

Tom Brady

2

8

3

7

0

10

9

1

Looking at these numbers shows that it's not outlying seasons throwing off the averages, but that the average actually does represent the average season of these QBs.
Looking at the statistics of these QBs, it’s pretty easy to see there is some merit to the criticism that Newton did turn the ball over too much. It is also pretty easy to see that what he did was nearly impossibly impressive.
To have greater yardage totals than Brees and Brady in 80% of their seasons, and Manning in 100% of his seasons is astounding to me.

The last stats I’m going to look at are the first season of full time starting duties for each of them.

Name

Total Yards

Completion percentage

YPA

TD

INT

Fumbles lost

Cam Newton

4,757

60.0

7.8

35

17

2

Peyton Manning

3,801

56.7

6.5

26

28

1

Drew Brees

3,413

60.8

6.2

18

16

0

Tom Brady

2,886

63.9

6.9

18

12

3

These are really fun statistics to me. Newton gained almost 1,000 yards more than the next closest QB on the list, almost a yard more per attempt, and almost as many TDs as Brees and Brady combined.
The reason I looked at their first year starting is that in all three of the players, is that their starting year is the basement on their performances.
If this is the basement on Newtons career as well, the sky is the limit for him.

It would be far too early to say that Newton will make the hall of fame, but judging from the stats from these 3 QBs who will almost certainly make the hall of fame, I don’t think it’s too early to say that he has a legitimate chance to be one of the greatest ever.

The content of these posts are those of the user/fan making the post only

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