Originally posted on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 9/28/12

Thursday was not Cam Newton’s night. In what could have been a coming out party for the “In Cam We Trust” era of Panthers football, the team turned in one of the most unwatchable games in team history. The team was completely outplayed, out coached, and out smarted en route to a shameful 36-7 loss. Cam played what could easily be described as the worst game of his life, throwing three interceptions and rushing for a mere 6 yards. It was the classic case of a better team beating up on a worse team. Ugly game, move on. And that’s exactly what would have happened if this was simply a 1 p.m. Sunday game.

But this was a nationally televised Thursday night game against the defending Super Bowl champions. And if Jay Cutler has taught us anything—besides for how to ride a stationary bike on the sidelines—it’s that anything that happens on a Thursday night game will be discussed, dissected, analyzed, replayed, and any other adjective you can think of until the next big story boils up. The more controversial, the better. The bigger the name, the better. And, seemingly, the further away from the football, the more interesting it is to the public.

Needless to say, Cam did not do his 3-pick performance any favors with his fourth quarter sideline demeanor. So it was not surprising to wake up Friday morning and hear questions about Newton’s leadership skills, as opposed to his pocket presence, coming from the national airwaves. Actions are always amplified on nationally televised games, and Cam’s sideline sulk-fest was the hottest topic on the table. On top of that, Cam added more fuel to the immaturity fire by doing his patented Superman dance after running for a 1-yard touchdown when the game was already out of hand.

Over the past week, criticism of the young quarterback has come from every angle. He has heard it from the national media, the local media, fans, the organization, and even teammates. Pundits have started questioning everything from his mental toughness to his leadership ability to his overall attitude toward the game. Cam’s stock has gone from “franchise, elite level quarterback” to “let’s see if the Browns are willing to part with a first round pick” in a matter of days. All because he picked the wrong time to act like a loaner.

To Panthers’ fans, this side of Cam isn’t new. We’ve seen this before. There were numerous times last season where Cam camped out at the end of the bench, by himself, with a towel over his head at the end of a losing effort. The only difference this time is that the entire country was watching. Last year, the Panthers had zero nationally televised games, so no one outside of Charlotte really paid attention to Panther games, outside of looking at Newton’s stats. No one in the national media knew, or cared, about what Newton did on the sidelines because all they saw was the dazzling box score. But now that Newton has had a string of less than stellar games, including one on the National stage, everyone is quick to point out that his problem must be that he needs an attitude adjustment. But Carolina fans know better.

This is déjà vu for us, and we’ve seen the outcome. We know that Cam has the tendency to sulk at the end of a 36-7 drubbing, and then come out the next Sunday and dominate. His talent is still as potent as ever, and we shouldn’t be quick to dismiss his promise and place the blame on his leadership abilities. This is a quarterback who is so hurt by losing that he can’t even muster up a smile at the end of a loss, the way so many other quarterbacks do so effortlessly. It’s hard to fault a guy for that. In this league, losing only makes you stronger if you hate the thought of it so much, that you will do whatever it takes to never have that feeling again.

So maybe Cam’s demeanor is not the problem. Maybe our perception of his demeanor is the problem. As far as we know, Cam Newton is a promising young quarterback who is still developing athletically and mentally. Until I see differently, that’s exactly what I will think.

Be sure to check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.

MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for our favorite football movies
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Dwyane Wade’s cousin shot and killed in Chicago

NFL tries to reduce kick returns, promptly causes more kick returns

San Francisco Giants inching closer to a record they really don’t want

Clint Dempsey undergoing testing for irregular heartbeat

Troubling details emerge from Jeremy Jeffress' DWI arrest

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Chargers would welcome Joey Bosa if he signed contract

Falcons rookie Keanu Neal needs surgery on knee

Jerry Jones unhappy with Ezekiel Elliott's dispensary visit

Texas Tech using fake Twitter accounts to track players

Nike creates custom Air Jordan shoes in tribute to Craig Sager

Browns wanted ‘second-round pick and then some’ for Gordon

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

Marshall’s first impression of Fitzpatrick: ‘He was terrible’

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Six worst quarterback situations in the NFL

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

A look at 2016 college football conference changes

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

The 20 best boxing movies of all time

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker