Jameis Winston had a strong rookie season on the field. He also acted like a pro off of the field. He could teach Cam Newton a thing or two.
Jameis Winston and Cam Newton had similar college football careers. Both quarterbacks are Heisman Trophy winners, both have won national championships, and both have great athletic ability. That being said, both quarterbacks have found themselves to be involved in controversy at one point or another, and both have run into trouble with the law while going to school.
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A quick rundown of what Jameis Winston can do to improve as quarterback consists of accurate passing and thinking quickly in order to make smarter decisions in the heat of the moment when he’s trying to avoid being slammed to the ground. This will no doubt be addressed by Winston and the Tampa Bay coaching staff, but the one thing Winston can control is how he behaves. So far during his time with the NFL he has said all of the right things, kept himself out of trouble and is on his way to being a good NFL quarterback. He must not fall into the trap of now trying to become Cam Newton.
Winston had a solid rookie season. However, coming off of a 6-10 season in which the team lost the last four games, I believe Winston would be the first to say he simply needs to be better. One thing that nobody seems to acknowledge often is how well Winston conducted himself all year. He wasn’t linked to any negative behavior like he was in college. He faced the media after both wins and losses and managed to conduct himself very professionally.
Cam Newton had an excellent 2015 season where he was named MVP. If anybody was unaware that he had an excellent season, they would need to go no further then asking the man himself. While scoring touchdowns he would regularly pose and give footballs to children. This is certainly a popular gesture by Newton that few could take issue with. The problem here is that Newton has a negative past. In addition to his past, his excessive celebrating and “dabbing” at the expense of other [losing] teams comes off as rather cocky. Instead of trying to do something besides celebrating and mocking other teams, Newton decided to blame the media and everybody but himself.
After two weeks of talking seemingly endlessly about himself, the Super Bowl was here. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10. Maybe the Panthers only officially lost by two touchdowns but those who watched knew that the score didn’t depict how badly they were beaten. Newton was hit multiple times and pummeled to the ground. He was beaten like a bully who was finally punched in his own face, and much like a bully he hid in the corner and pouted. Newton showed us all that he cannot face adversity.
He had guarded, defensive body language, and his explanation for not jumping on his fumble was weak at best. Instead of actually answering the question he decided to try to compare it to other quarterbacks actions. He justified leaving the press conference after the game by giving a poetic quote saying, “You show me a good loser and I’m going to show you a loser” It’s hard to determine what was more embarrassing, Newton’s conduct in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, his play in the Super Bowl, or his conduct following the Super Bowl.
It might not be a bad idea for Newton to take a page out of Winston’s book and show some semblance of humility. Winston has found a way to take some of the focus off his off the field issues in college. Obviously Winston would like to duplicate Newton’s success on the field, but it may be Newton who should consider taking Winston’s approach with dealing with the media, and handling himself like a professional.