Blog Entry

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

Posted on: September 2, 2011 9:37 am
Edited on: September 2, 2011 9:38 am

Posted by Ryan Wilson

We've spent much of the preseason focused on the the battle for the backup job in Denver. It became clear early on that Kyle Orton would be the starter, despite offseason speculation that 2010 first-round pick Tim Tebow could ascend to the role. Instead,the storyline was Tebow vs. Brady Quinn with the winner getting the earpiece and clipboard on game days.

Meanwhile a more interesting backup quarterback competition was unfolding in Charlotte, where Cam Newton has been the unofficial starter since the moment he was taken with the first-overall pick in April. (The news became official Thursday night when it was printed on team letterhead and announced publicly by coach Ron Rivera.)

The contestants: Jimmy Clausen, the team's second-round pick a year ago who had about as rough a rookie season as could be dreamed up, and Derek Anderson, a 2007 Pro Bowler who fell on hard times in recent years with the Browns and the Cardinals.

In the Panthers' final preseason game against the Steelers, Anderson got the second-team snaps and took advantage of the opportunity. He finished the night 11 of 19 for 192 yards, including a 41-yard touchdown pass to David Clowney. Clausen, on the other hand, had a forgettable effort. Details via Rapid Reporter and Carolina Growl writer Steve Reed:
Clausen had a disastrous night, throwing an interception on his first pass of the game and then fumbling a snap from center leading to a Steelers touchdown in the fourth quarter. He threw another pass that should have been picked off and was also sacked three times, including once on fourth down while the Panthers were in the red zone. He looked particularly slow moving around in the pocket after injuring his thigh last Thursday night against Cincinnati.

It was the first time this preseason that Anderson was the second quarterback into the game and could signal the Panthers are more comfortable with him being Newton's primary backup since he's more familiar with (offensive coordinator) Rob Chudzinski's offense.
Anderson came to Carolina from Arizona, but he has experience in Chudzinski's offense during their time together in Cleveland.

"The thing about that is Derek is a guy that doesn't need a lot of reps in this offense," Rivera said, via Reed. "At the same time, if something were to happen, he's a guy that because he doesn't need a lot of reps in this offense could probably help us. So we are most certainly going to take a look at that and see where that fits with what we want to do offensively."

As for the news that Newton will be under center when the Panthers take the field on September 11 at Arizona, Rivera sounded optimistic.

"We are looking forward to him being our starter," Rivera said. "He's going to grow as our starter and we're going to grow as a football team. The thing that has to happen is that we as a football team have to grow and it's not just about him. It's about the rest of growing with our system... I want to make this clear again: We didn't draft Cam to be our savior, we drafted him to help lead this football team. He will be our starter on opening day."

Pretty sure the fans don't see it this way, but that's what happens when the team struggles to go 2-14 the year before. For his part, Newton said all the right things about winning the job.

"That's a big opportunity and a big responsibility," he said. "To be a starter in this league there is so much that goes into it behind the scenes and I've got to be ready for that."

It turned out to be a dreadful night for former Notre Dame quarterbacks trying to climb NFL depth charts. In Denver, Quinn got the start and went 4 for 12 for 26 yards and an interception. If there's a silver lining it's this: because of the new game-day roster rules, teams no longer have to name an emergency third quarterback.

So should Rivera replace Newton, he could use either Anderson or Clausen at any point during the game. In theory, both players are co-backups. The reality -- at least after Clausen's performance against the Steelers -- is that he has the No. 3 job sewn up.

But, hey, the regular season hasn't even started. A lot can change in the coming weeks and months.  After all, the Browns drafted Quinn as their franchise quarterback in 2007 and that season Anderson led the team to 10 wins and he made the Pro Bowl. This game is crazy like that.

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Since: Feb 22, 2008
Posted on: September 2, 2011 1:32 pm

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

You are certainly special, Fballgenius.

Since: Sep 20, 2008
Posted on: September 2, 2011 1:15 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Oct 9, 2006
Posted on: September 2, 2011 12:54 pm

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

When will most of you stop listening to old, has been, never played the sport writers  and start listening to people who actually know football?  Doyle, Freeman, Dodd, Clark and the rest are clueless has been ESPN watchers.  They have limited access to some inside info and that is it.  They don't know talent, potential or football for all that matter.  They are simply puppets who repeat and say what is known or easily known.

The Genius on the other hand is a bonafied player who played the game, understands the game, talent, potential and all the intangibles surrounding what it takes to be successful in the league.  If I wanted to write more serious, I could but currently no one is paying me and I still get more hits than those suckers.  Well, not suckers but average thinking keyboard thumpers (ATKTs).  New term learn it.  An ATKT is an average thinking keyboard thumper. 

If you followed me I was the first to say Quinn was a bum, Clausen was a bum, Leinart was a bum, Stafford was a casualty, Braford was the best of his class, Newton was special and that Vick would be the best QB in the league.  Currently Vick is the best QB in the league bar none.  Manning is through, Brady is systematic and aging, Rothlisberger is still growing up and Brees is not fat enough.  Some of the best QBs in the NFL are subs-  Young proved what he is last night.  Batch is a legitimate starter.  Tebow could be starting somewhere and playing well. 

Now to the column, Newton has earned everything has has earned.  No one works harder than him, studies longer and is more committed.  The coaches have to run him out of the film room.  Ask anyone who knows him and they will tell you he wants to be the best QB ever.  He is dedicated to becoming a top notch QB in the NFL.  Last night he looked like a seasoned vet outside of one pass where he thought Smith was running a out but ran in.  Other than that, that first series was perfect. 

Want to here the real genius behind Rivera starting Cameron as he could easily start Anderson:  He kows this is a building year so why not give Newton the experience?  Rivera is a Genius and he knows Cameron is raw, the fans know he is raw but he brings possibilities like no other QB in the league.  He is physical, smart, has a strong arm and showed great accuracy last night.  That doesn't just come because you are the number one pick.  He has been working his tail off and it showed for a series. 

Read my lips: Newton will turn some heads this year.  If you think he is a liar and cheater, what does that have to do with the price of tea in China?  Hope you get it.  Stop exposing internal insecurities, grow up and do something in life and stop hating on people for past transgressions. 

Since: Mar 24, 2009
Posted on: September 2, 2011 12:30 pm

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

Obviously, the Panthers didn't lay out the money they're paying Cam Newton for him to stand on the sidelines holding a clip board.So, regardless of how the Panther QBs played in preseason games, I think Newton being the starter was set in stone from day one.If nothing else, his being on the field will likely create more fan interest in the team.Is Newton ready to be an NFL starting QB? I think the clear answer is NO.After following the NFL for many years, I've only seen two QBs that were able to step in as day one rookie starters & be effective right away-Ben Rothlisberger & Dan Marino.Almost all rookie QBs (even the ones that end up having Hall of Fame careers) who start from day one end up throwing a lot of intereceptions, running for their lives, and taking a terrible pounding.

Cam Newton has a lot of raw physical talent, but needs time to develop. The smart move, in my view, would have been to start Derek Anderson initally & let Newton mature a little before throwing him to the lions.And, if Newton turns out to be a really big liability on the field this year, he could end up playing himself right out of Charlotte.If the Panther are bad enough to finish with the worst record in the NFL again this season (which is possible) & end up with the #1 pick in the draft again, I think they'd have to use it to draft Andrew Luck & make him their QB of the future. That would mean Newton would probably be the odd man out in Carolina, & that he'd be traded. Wouldn't that be ironic?

Since: Aug 9, 2009
Posted on: September 2, 2011 12:29 pm

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

Duffno1 nailed it! Its a tough situation for any young QB to be in. I do feel Newton gives them a better chance to win just because he can use his legs after the pocket breaks down but Newton and Clausen are both in bad situations to start there career...

Since: Dec 1, 2006
Posted on: September 2, 2011 12:00 pm

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

there is not enough bad stuff that can happen to Cam Newton.  He is a liar and a cheat. 

Since: Sep 25, 2006
Posted on: September 2, 2011 11:57 am

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

Newton made starter so they can figure out he's a bust in time to draft Andrew Luck next year

Since: Nov 8, 2010
Posted on: September 2, 2011 11:40 am

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

Did anyone ever think that, in their situation, the Panthers drafted Cam Newton #1 overall just to NOT play him Week 1? 

Since: Oct 25, 2009
Posted on: September 2, 2011 11:34 am

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

During that draft when the panthers took clausen I remember all of the so called analysts saying the Clausen was the most NFL ready in the draft.  My question is what happend?  If that was so, shouldnt the Panthers stick with him and continue to groom him to take over.  Now they saying he is a 3rd string QB.  So, is the Panthers not seeing what all the experts saw or where the experts wrong?  Giving the horrible situation Jimmy was thrown in it would've been hard for any young QB to succeed.  What happends if Newton does no better than Clausen?(I hope he successful, because too many HATERS out there on the fella) Will Carolina draft another QB in the 1st round lol.

Since: Nov 24, 2009
Posted on: September 2, 2011 10:27 am

Newton named starter, Clausen could be no. 3

I can't believe someone suggested Jake Delhomme be a mentor?!?!?  Jake Delhomme was garbage.  He couldn't hit the broad side of a barn and apparently was color blind to exactly what team he was supposed to be passing to.  Don't forget he's the only QB in professional football that had season ending thumb and finger injuries that oddly occurred in game 6 or 7 after an interception party he was throwing.  Some people will defend him by pointing out the Panthers went to the Superbowl.  But we didn't have a passing game then.  Steven Davis took that team down the field and Jake might have thrown a 10-15 yarder to a Ricky Proehl or Steve Smith--and those guys were still jumping, diving, and doing all kind of acrobats to catch those rocks that were lobbed with about as much accuracy as an outfielder paying t-ball.  Consider this--Panthers finally got rid of him...and the Cleveland Browns took him and thought he was garbage.

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