The first two weeks of the 2013 NFL season haven’t been overly productive for the Carolina Panthers, especially quarterback Cam Newton.
After engaging in a defensive melee with the Seattle Seahawks in Week One, a game the Panthers could’ve easily won, Carolina struggled again in Week Two, this against a lowly Buffalo Bills squad.
Now 0-2, teammate and top wide receiver Steve Smith suggests that one of the main reasons for the struggles is because Newton is pressing.
Per Inside the Panthers:
On his weekly radio appearance on WFNZ’s The Drive on Monday, Smith responded to critiques of Newton by saying the third-year quarterback is forcing too much too soon.
“What the current issue is, you have a young player pressing,” Smith said. “And what do I mean by pressing? You know when a young player, a receiver, if he doesn’t get a lot of passes, all of sudden instead of going down he fights for that extra yard, fumble. That’s what you’re seeing with Cam a little bit, I feel like, in the past game is, well, [imitates stammering] and now you got that pressing.
“And that pressing isn’t because, oh, it’s when you’re not moving the ball down the field. Young players do it. And he has to understand that. And that’s just part of being young. It’s not just a quarterback issue, it’s tight end, wide receiver, running back. It’s when you press and you have that competitiveness in you. You’re like, ‘Man, I can change things if I just throw it here, if I just do that.’ And that’s the only bad part about a young player is when they press. That’s what’s going on is that pressing.”
Newton hasn’t looked very comfortable at all this season, why the pressing, considering how solid of a season he had last year? An unknown, though hopefully for Newton and the Panther faithful, it gets reversed quickly.