Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, who has been a lightening rod for controversy since his days at Auburn, has had to deal with his fair share of criticism from the valid–initial cause of concern was his attitude–to the nit-picky (dancing in the end-zone, particularly “dabbing”). So for Newton, he believes he has a good theory to what makes him a lightening rod for the critique.

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From ESPN:

According to Newton, the only thing that has changed has been winning. Other than that, Cam has always been Cam.


He’s been questioned for a lack of leadership. He’s been questioned for his dabbin’ and dancing after scoring touchdowns, for taking photos of teammates at the end of a blowout win. But Newton said he’s the same person now as he was when the Panthers made him the first pick of the 2011 draft.

“The only thing that’s changed is we’re winning,” Newton said.

Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera also chimed in, saying that Newton, who is 6’5 and 250 pounds, should scare opposing players and critics with his unique skill set composed of size, speed, power and skill.

“People should be scared of a quarterback with his skill set more than anything else,” he said. “That’s who he is. He’s a tremendously gifted athlete, a terrific quarterback, a smart football player … the list goes on and on.That’s what they should be concerned about more than anything else. … I don’t think he wants to be known as an African-American quarterback. I think he wants to be known as a quarterback, and a great one at that.”

Newton, arguably the best player at his position right now, will face up against one of the best players at that position in the history of the league, Peyton Manning, in Super Bowl 50. Can’t. wait.