He is in his 10th NFL season where he has experienced all the highs and lows of professional sports.
With that being said, has Cam been overrated during his NFL career?
This is not an easy yes or no answer.
Rather, it depends which part of his career is being evaluated.
2011-2015 – Cam Is At His Best
The first half of Cam Newton’s career was awesome.
As a rookie for the Carolina Panthers in 2011, he was a record breaker.
Current rookies are being measured against his rookie stats.
Most passing yards in NFL history:
(First 7 career starts)
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) October 25, 2020
In addition to winning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, Cam set rookie records for rushing yards (706) and passing yards (4,051).
Newton led the Panthers to the playoffs in 2013, 2014, and with the Super Bowl appearance in 2015.
2015 was another of Cam’s best.
Cam Newton was unstoppable during his 2015 MVP season
▫️ 3,837 yards
▫️ 35 TD
▫️ 10 INT
▫️ 636 rush yards
▫️ 10 rushing TDs
▫️ 15-1 record
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) June 29, 2020
Despite losing the Super Bowl, Newton was named NFL MVP.
From 2011-2015, Cam Newton was at the top of his game.
And he was not overrated.
2016-2020 – Cam Begins To Struggle
In 2016, the Panthers were believed to be the team to beat after their 15-1 2015 season.
However, the team struggled to finish 6-10.
For the first time in his career, Cam’s legs couldn’t get him out of trouble.
He only rushed for 359 yards the entire season.
In previous seasons, he rushed anywhere between 539 and 741 yards.
The injury bug started to hit him.
Before the 2017 season, he had rotator cuff surgery.
2018 brought nagging shoulder issues.
And the most devastating and slowest to heal happened in 2019 when Cam had a fracture in his foot.
He only played 2 games during the 2019 season.
In 2020, Cam got a fresh start, signing with the New England Patriots.
He had early success but has not been the same player after testing positive for COVID-19 on October 3, 2020.
Can A Rushing QB Be Consistent and Have Longevity?
Cam Newton reached 30,000 career passing yards today, and has now become the first player in NFL history with 30,000+ passing yards and 5,000+ rushing yards
— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) October 25, 2020
Rushing QBs, regardless of their size, tend to take a physical beating.
And it either lands them on IR for extended periods of time or shortens their careers.
His career never got off the ground because of his injuries.
Russell Wilson is probably the exception to the rule of modern day rushing QBs who has consistent success.
Lamar Jackson and Kyler Murray will be ones to watch as their careers unfold.
But there is something to be said for a rushing QB taking a lot of extra contact whereas less mobile QBs hand off to the running back who takes those hits.
Cam is one of the best rushing QBs, but over a 10 year career that is difficult to sustain.
So the long answer to the original question of whether Cam Newton is overrated is this:
Cam Newton was not overrated in 2011-2015.
But given his success in those years and expectations placed on him, he was overrated from 2016-2019.
The jury is still out on 2020 since the season is still in progress.
Though he was benched last week during the 49ers game after a poor performance so that is not a good sign for him or the Patriots.
NEXT: Could The Patriots Pursue Andrew Luck In The Offseason?
Cam Newton throws his 3rd INT of the game 😬
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 25, 2020