Panthers’ Cam Newton ready to be leader, take ownership

Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports /

The Carolina Panthers made some shocking moves letting their wide receiver group leave during free agency, including cutting wide receiver Steve Smith. That move caught a lot of people by surprise, including young Panthers fans and even quarterback Cam Newton.

“Did it catch me by surprise? It caught all of us — if you were in the 704 region, you were caught by surprise,” Newton said, via the Charlotte Observer. “Everybody in the Carolinas was surprised, including myself.”

That creates a leadership void for the Panthers, Smith had played 13 seasons with the team and was a verteran presence. Newton will be leaned

“I have to take more ownership of the offense and I will,” Newton said.

He’ll need to get familiar with a new group of receivers rather quickly. Unfortunately he is recovering from an injury and won’t be able to work with his new receivers as soon as possible. Newton did add that his recover way “moving at a rapid pace.”