Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 8/23/12

We all know how good these two rookies performed last season.

One leading his team to a respectable 9-7 record and a playoff berth, and another who broke Multiple rookie quarterback records.

These two guys are Cincinnati's Andy Dalton and Cam Newton of Carolina.

Newton's Case

Now many of you may be saying, "What Weapons are surrounding Newton?" Well, I'm glad you asked. Newton and his team are actually a pretty damn good squad, with Steve Smith at receiver and a running back tandem of DeAngelo Williams and Johnathan Stewart, as just a few stars that are on their offense.

They also have a very underrated receiver named Brandon LaFell, although he didn't have a breakout year, he had over 600 yards receiving. Not too flashy, but he definitely can help Newton out in the long run. I don't expect Newton to have a slump, in fact I expect him to make a possible run at the playoffs at 10-6 or 9-7. He won't slump.

Dalton's Case

Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton doesn't have many receiving weapons around him either, but he does have one thing many teams wish they had -- and that's another sophomore that goes by the name of A.J. Green. Green is one of the top-rated wideouts in the NFL, and it has been that way since he was a high school recruit to the University of Georgia.

Dalton performed exceptionally well last season, earning him over 3,000 yards and 20 TDs. Now don't get me wrong, as a Bengals fan until the day I die, it pains me to say that it will most likely be Dalton who hits a sophomore slump.

In his final five regular season starts, he averaged just 178 passing yards per game and threw a combined total of four touchdowns, not including a pitiful performance in the AFC Wild Card game against the AFC South champion Houston Texans, where he threw a total of three interceptions.

Who hits the slump?

Well that's just the thing, Neither do. Newton will not slump because of the athletic ability that is helping support him, If he can't pass, He'll run. He actually ran for only seven less touchdowns than he passed for with 14 trips to the end zone.

Dalton will not slump either. He has a good supporting cast and it is led by A.J. Green, Benjarvus Green-Ellis and Jermaine Gresham. Be prepared for two of the best sophomore seasons you've seen in years.

 



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