By Brittney Cason
Chris Mortensen reported on ESPN’s Sunday Countdown that the Panthers are “privately concerned” about their quarterback’s mental makeup. Newton, according to Mortensen, has logged time with a “mind coach” to help him adjust to the heightened expectations and pressures surrounding the second-year starter.
… Well it’s not so private anymore, is it? It was the topic of conversation on WFNZ today in fact.
There seems to be more confusion about Cam Newton seeing a “mind coach” than there is over some of the calls from the replacement refs.
Let me break it down for you: he needs a therapist … but can you blame him? I think it’s healthy and smart to add that to his training. It is a mental game as well as a physical one, after all.
And I think we should all be sympathetic and supportive of this rather than treating him like he’s playing for the opposing team now. This will make him a better person and thus a better Panther.
First of all, who doesn’t need a little mind coaching? If you’re judging him then I assume you’re perfect.
But guess what, Cam is not perfect … but he probably feels like he has to be because that’s what we expect and demand from him as our very own Superman who’s going to swoop in and save our team.
Newsflash: he isn’t really Superman. And we’re going to make him fly off the handle if we keep treating him like it.
Not to blow his cover like someone from Cam’s camp did, but I know a NASCAR driver who quietly went to a sports psychiatrist, and as soon as he cleaned up the mess under the hood of his personal life, he started winning more.
We the fans can play a role in Cam’s mind coaching. If we cheer him on as he gets his mind right, his game will follow and we all win.
All this talk about a sophomore slump … he’s not going through a slump, he’s just having to bridge the gap between being a pro with a lot of hype and an amateur. It’s a mental battle between ego and naivety. He’s got to live up to his own hype now. That’s a lot of pressure for a 23-year-old.
When I was his age I was intimidated by the corporate ladder as a recent graduate, trying to climb up it and deal with the pressures of the real world … remember that? Well multiply that by a couple million and with the whole world watching. He has so much pressure weighing on his shoulders right now I’m surprised he can lift his shoulder to throw the dang ball.
You haven’t walked a mile in his Nikes, you have no idea how it is to be Cam or what’s going on in his head. So we must stop demanding a show out of Cam, and maybe he’ll stop trying to put one on for us and just play football.
He is first and foremost, just a regular person like you and me, and an athlete second. So hate all you want, but remember that we are our own worst haters.
Cam, in therapy this is what they call the break through …
Repeat after me: “IT’S NOT ABOUT ME!”
We the fans are making it about you, yes … but you have to remind yourself that it’s not for your own glory or else you’ll never be victorious. Just ask OchoCinco or Terrell Owens. When you play for the glory of your team, your community, and above all, God you will always be glorious. You have to be humble, or else you’ll be humbled! People might be praising you now while you succeed, but they’ll be the first to condemn you when you fail.
So stop sulking on the bench, put your big boy pads on and lead your team. We think you Cam!