It could be said that Cam Newton is standing at a crossroads of sorts in his NFL career. Coming off a disappointing season and offseason shoulder surgery, the Carolina Panthers signal-caller, entering his seventh year, admitted recently he needs to be better in order to help deliver the team a championship.
“The more I reflect on who I am or what I have become and what I can still become – I need to be better. I know I need to be better,” Newton told Bill Voth for an interview with the team’s official site. “I want to be better because me being my best me helps everything else around me, including this organization.
Newton, after throwing for the first time in months, said Monday there is “no doubt” he’ll be 100 percent by the time training camp rolls around after offseason surgery on his right shoulder.
The 28-year-old quarterback noted in the interview a complete commitment to improvement, including confronting his much publicized candy addiction, something that has helped him lose weight.
Newton praised the moves the Panthers made this offseason to improve his supporting cast, highlighted by the additions of Christian McCaffrey and Curtis Samuel in the 2017 NFL Draft.
With all that in mind, an introspective Newton, who posted a career-low 75.8 quarterback rating during the 6-10 2016 campaign — although not entirely to blame for it — understands the onus is on him to lead the Panthers to the Super Bowl promised land once again and win a title.
“Man, I want a ring. I’ve gotten a ring everywhere I’ve been. Now I’m waiting here,” Newton says. “I feel like I’m in my prime. My prime better be now. I don’t want to have seen my best days – that’s scary.
“When you look at quarterbacks and where I’m at right now, I want to commit everything to the game of football. I want my diet to display that. I want my life to display that. I don’t want to look back when I’m 40 and be like, ‘Dang, when I was 28 and we had this talent around us, I didn’t maximize it.’”