Everyone loves a mobile quarterback who takes off and duns down field until he takes a few shots or gets injured. The Carolina Panthers have one such quarterback in Cam Newton, who had his left ankle rebuilt.
Panthers head coach Ron Rivera thinks Newton will need to adapt and learn to slide, and compares him to another notable and local athlete who had to change his game to stay healthy.
“[Hornets owner] Michael Jordan used to go to the hole all the time and dunk,” Rivera said, via Bill Voth of Black and Blue Review. “But if you ask Michael, he realized that later in his career, he had to develop that jumper. So he went work at it. Cam’s the same way. He needs to develop as a passer.
“In an interesting way, this may have been the best thing that happened to him in terms of his pure quarterbacking development. He’s had to stay in the pocket, he’s had to have good footwork, he’s had to step into his throws. I think this has been a plus for him.”
If Newton has to run though, Rivera is ok with it.
“I’m going to yell at him because I want him to get rid of the ball. But if he runs, he runs,” Rivera said. “He’s gotta do what he’s gotta do to protect himself. He’s gotta do what he’s gotta do to make plays.”