It was just this past week that Cam Newton raised eyebrows when he told Peter King, "I see myself not only as a football player, but an entertainer and icon." At the 2011 NFL Combine, he opened the press conference with a prepared statement that clarified and recanted essentially what he had said before. Obviously, he was reacting to the public reaction that has questioned his dedication to football as he prepares for the 2011 NFL Draft. He said this:
"First and foremost, I understand that my obligation is to be the best possible football player that I can be. I know and believe that. The recent comments were made during the announcement of my new endorsement partnership. I was making the point that I want to be the best possible ambassador for them, just like I want to be the best possible ambassador for whatever team I'm lucky enough to play for."
What should we take from this?
Aside from the controversy that has surrounded Newton, he has shown to be a hard-working football player who understands his role in the football world. He is well-spoken, he is talented and he is potentially dynamic.
The fact he owned up to saying what he did is a positive in my book. Like so many other athletes, Newton could have simply said that it was a misunderstanding or the words were taken out of context, or even that they didn't say what was allegedly said.
Obviously, as with any other prepared statement, this was rehearsed and filtered through his "people," but I don't see any real red flags.
Did Newton's comments during the week and/or his statement at the combine press conference change what you think about the quarterback?