Cam Newton has been in the headlines for awhile now. From his fathers NCAA violations to his Heisman Trophy and National Championship title. He shows up out in Cali and puts on a media only display of his talents. A structured preview of his pro-day. His name brings up debate as to how high he will be drafted to whom he will be drafted by. It makes for great debate.
But is Cam Newton the answer to the Miami Dolphins QB problems?
A highly proficient QB at Auburn, his positives and negatives will have to be weighed against the teams needs and the futures of Jeff Ireland and Tony Sparano also must be put into the equation, not just with Newton, but any QB that they may take in round 1.
Newton has many intangables. He is fast, elusive, and can be accurate. He is smart with the football and can be a game changer with his arm and with his legs. He is more Vince Young without the attitude than a Michael Vick. He has a very quick release and throws a picture perfect over the shoulder ball with a tight spiral. His accuracy is solid and he can thread the ball into tight spaces. He lacks touch on his deep pass but some scouting reports say that is a footwork issue. Something he will need to work on.
There is no denying however that his legs are the most valuable asset he owns. His ability to break tackles and make defenders miss is why he sits atop many teams draft boards. The fact that he hasn’t lost a college game doesn’t hurt either.
But there are as many questions as well.
Cam Newton is very raw. He played primarily in a shotgun system that was a one look and run style of offense. As a result, there are questions as to whether he can scan a field or if he will be yet another QB in a long line of runners who simply take off when option one isn’t there. There is no doubting his speed and quickness out of and in a collapsing pocket but that’s the college level. Here, most pro’s on defense can run as fast or at least fast enough to contain. So while his legs will get him out of trouble some of the time, they won’t get him out of it nearly as much as they did in college.
Newton was not well liked at Florida or Blinn junior college, according to several scouting reports that stated he rode his team to beyond a leadership role, both on the field and off.
Another issue with Newton is his experience. Was he a one year wonder? Newton played 5 games in 2007, 1 game in 2008, was at a junior college in 2009, and finished with last years stellar season. Is that progressively getting better? He declined his senior season at Auburn in favor of the NFL. While some will argue he will make more money this year by coming out, he would have served himself better with another year of playing time before making the move.
There is little denying that Cam Newton is going to be a project. He won’t likely come in and start for any team in the NFL this year outside of, dare I say it, a Wild Cat type scheme.
There are a lot of fans who see Newton as the best option in this years draft class while others believe he will be a bust. Regardless he is a long term project that will need time, something that a team like the Miami Dolphins may not have much of.
Newton has the speed but lacks the discipline mentally to read the field. It’s not his fault as it was something that he wasn’t asked to do at Auburn. His ability to read NFL defenses will go a long way in determining his success at the next level.
There is a test that coaches and GM’s run at the NFL Combine that throws rapid fire scenarios at quarterbacks and the QB’s translate their actions and re-actions on a chalkboard, it will be interesting to see how Cameron handles that, not saying that he isn’t smart enough to deal with it but many QB’s pull from experience.
Recent rumors, and they are nothing but rumors, say that Miami has Newton atop their draft wish list. He may be the top QB on their list but that doesn’t mean they want him enough to spend a number 15 pick on him.
Cam Newton will go high in the draft, somewhere between 8 and 18. And he will be a project.