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Cam Newton showed his maturity while Kelvin Benjamin played himself

Panthers quarterback Cam Newton tried to take the high road and speak to Kelvin Benjamin in person, instead of meeting him on that level, Benjamin acted a fool.

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Buffalo Bills Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Imagine being so concerned with trying to convince yourself that you’re god’s greatest gift to catching passes in the National Football League that you celebrate a routine preseason touchdown catch by bellyflopping into the first row of the stands and proceed to lay back with your arms and legs outstretched like the fans are a chaise lounge...

... You’re now living that Kelvin Benjamin life.

Now imagine that a man who you once called your friend, a respected colleague and leader of a team you used to play for, decides to approach you and talk to you in person about some disparaging comments you made about him. Instead of meeting him on that plane of mutual respect that two adults who both make a lot of money doing their chosen profession at the highest level should be able to share, you back up, walk away, and generally act like a spoiled teenager.

... You’re definitely living that Kelvin Benjamin life, and you played yourself.

I can’t pretend to say that I understood exactly what they said to each other in that video, but I do know that the body language shown between Cam Newton and Kelvin Benjamin speaks volumes. It starts with Benjamin refusing to shake hands with Cam, continues with Benjamin stepping back and continuously stepping away instead of engaging with Cam, and then finally being so dismissive that Cam finally gives up and goes on about his day. It’s disrespect in the highest degree toward a man who never once took your own shortcomings public, even though you decided to do that with his.

As if that’s not enough, we see more effort out of you in five minutes of game time than you’ve ever shown in five years. Instead of staying humble and showing that your play can speak for itself, you decide to gloat. You decide that taking advantage of a mis-matched Kevon Seymour in the first preseason game of the season merits the sad upstate New York version of the Lambeau Leap that i can only coin the “Buffalo Bounce.”

As I watched you splash into that first row of seats, and sprawl yourself out like the fans should be fanning you and feeding you grapes instead of trying to figure out how to dislodge the couch that just surprisingly landed on them... I’m reminded that no one, whether it’s the Carolina Panthers, the Buffalo Bills, or even the Cleveland Browns, will ever possibly need you as much as you think they do. In fact, there isn’t one offense in the world that needs you more than you need a lesson in respect for yourself, others, and just generally growing the hell up.