Carolina Panthers

No. 2 best NFL Draft pick in Panthers history: Cam Newton

Cam Newton is the Panthers’ all-time leading passer, an NFL MVP, and the best quarterback the franchise has ever rostered.
Cam Newton is the Panthers’ all-time leading passer, an NFL MVP, and the best quarterback the franchise has ever rostered. jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

Welcome to the bright side of the NFL Draft, as we re-visit the 10 best picks in Carolina Panthers history.

No. 2 best pick: QB Cam Newton (2011)

The No. 1 overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, Cam Newton is in the conversation for greatest Panther in franchise history — undoubtedly its best quarterback.

In his first season, Newton set an NFL record for passing yards, rushing yards and rushing touchdowns by a rookie quarterback. His 14 rushing touchdowns were the second-most by a rookie at any position.

Since that season, Newton became Carolina’s all-time leading passer, the 2015 NFL MVP, a three-time Pro Bowler and First-Team All-Pro selection in 2015.

He is also arguably one of the league’s most recognizable figures and a constant presence in the Charlotte community, organizing Thanksgiving dinner giveaways, surprise Christmas donations and other charitable events throughout the city over the past eight years.

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Off the field, Cam Newton has remained a constant charitable presence in the Charlotte community. David T. Foster III dtfoster@charlotteobserver.com

He’s rushed for more touchdowns than any other quarterback in NFL history, and more yards than all but one — Michael Vick. Newton is one rushing touchdown away from entering the top-50 of all time in that category.

The term “value pick” generally applies to impact players taken later in the draft than Newton, but there’s value any time a team finds a franchise quarterback — even at the very top of the first round.





Marcel Louis-Jacques covers the Carolina Panthers for the Charlotte Observer, keeping you on top of Panthers news both on the field and behind the scenes. He is a 2014 graduate of Arizona State University and grew up in Sacramento, California.


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