Originally posted on Fox Sports Carolinas  |  Last updated 12/22/11
Carolina Panthers veteran offensive linemen Jordan Gross and Ryan Kalil paid Cam Newton a visit prior to last Sunday's game at Houston. Their mission: Help the young Newton learn to control his emotions. "They always get on me because I have a bad, bad tendency of showing my emotions on my face. I have to change that, and I'm trying to change it," Newton said. "Those guys constantly stay in my ear, saying, 'You have to be that same leader from the first quarter to the last quarter.' "Just that little statement being made before the game made me mindful that it can be a little detrimental to the team if you're mad and ticked off. I'm not saying that everybody else isn't feeling the same way you are, but at the quarterback position you have to stay even-keel." It worked last week against the Texans as the Panthers won 28-13 and Newton hopes it will work this Saturday when the Panthers host the Bucs. Gross said Newton is still learning. One lesson he said the star quarterback has learned is he doesn't have to be "the guy" in Carolina. "Maybe in college it was easier for one guy to win a game," Gross said. "Now I think he understands that he's a huge part of what we do, but it takes a whole team to win a football game. He doesn't carry as much weight on his shoulders now as far as taking total responsibility for a win or a loss. I think that makes him a better player, utilizing his team and the tools he has around him." Newton has taken some criticism for putting a towel over his head after a bad possession. He said he's still learning. He said he wants to borrow a page from Steve Smith and Jeremy Shockey, two veterans who enjoy themselves on the field. "I'm just trying to continuously get better and trying to be great in this league, whether it's taking the field like a champion or being a leader off the field -- whatever it takes," Newton said. Newton should have good luck Saturday. He had four touchdowns in the last meeting with the Bucs -- three rushing and one passing.
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