NFL Draft 2011: Cam Newton and the Media's Man Crush

Del KerbyContributor IFebruary 24, 2011

Roger Goodell
Roger GoodellJeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

Almost everyday there's a new article about the coming of the next great quarterback to the National Football League. A quarterback to lead a bottom feeding team out of the basement and into the glorious light and the Super Bowl.

That quarterback can only be the great Cam Newton, Superman of the NFL Draft 2011. He'll jump over defensive lines as if leaping over tall buildings, and opposing lineman will bounce off him like snowflakes.

He will be faster than a speeding bullet and more powerful than a locomotive, if some of the comments being written are to be believed.

A giant among the other draftees waiting to be selected; head and shoulders above the next most qualified draftee in the class of 2011.

Yes, sportswriters and broadcasters have a man crush on Cam Newton, just like Tim Tebow after his Heisman winning year at Florida. It is seen in almost every story that is published or broadcast in the media.

But wait the draft is still two months away. There's the NFL combine to consider and how he'll actually stack up against the unworthy who'll be there competing for a quarterback job.

The sportswriters need him to be the number one pick in the draft; thus justifying their man crush.

It's amazing how Cam Newton's stock has risen as we approach the NFL combine. The sports blogs and supposed experts, who aren't scouts or coaches, have him moving up the charts with a bullet. His stock on ESPN has gone from the 28th pick, a month ago, to the 3rd pick today.

What changed to make this occur? Nothing really, outside of a media day circus work-out.

Well, I hate to burst the bubble, but Cam Newton is far from being the best prepared college player for making the transition to the NFL.

His character is already a question mark for NFL teams, as character matters in this league, with the incidents at Florida being the least of them.

His father's actions in the pay for play scheme that occurred before his acceptance at Auburn. Yes, there was no direct proof Cam Newton was directly involved, but the stain lingers. The old adage of "guilt by association" or in this case, family relation remains in the background.

Now we have his comments regarding how he accomplished more in one year than most players accomplish in an entire college career. He states that he wants to be an icon and an entertainer, not just a NFL quarterback.

Will we see "Decision III" before the NFL draft happens on ESPN? Will Cam Newton pull a John Elway and say "I'm only going to a team that is a winner?" Will he pull an Eli Manning and say "you can draft me, but I won't report so trade me to a big market team?"

Cam Newton's ego is becoming his own worst enemy. His interviews show a lack of maturity and judgement going into the draft and this will have negative repercussions with NFL teams.

Right now he's a one year wonder, with stars in his eyes and money on his mind.   His interviews sound more of like Chad Ochocinco and less like the unproven commodity that he is.

He is seen as a raw talented athlete by the NFL scouts that have been interviewed and is not ready to start in the NFL as a quarterback by most accounts.

The speed of the NFL game will bring a rude awaking to this brash young man. The demand for respect by the veterans will be a new experience for the rookie as he enters his first NFL locker room. 

Unlike Auburn, he won't be the 900 pound gorilla in the room, but just another NUG (new untested guy) to the established veterans.

Too be brutally honest, Cam Newton is at best a second round pick. But, I'm sure some team will draft him in the first round taking a chance he won't be a bust. 

For his sake, he'd better hope that a team with an established NFL quarterback drafts him. A team like the Redskins or the Colts; thus learning how to play the position to succeed in the NFL.

But between now and draft day, I'm sure the media's man crush will only grow. The stories regaling his advancement in making the transition from a college system quarterback to an NFL pro-style offense becoming a source of entertainment on ESPN.

We will hear from ESPN's Trent Dilfer, Todd McShay and Mel Kyper as to why this kid should be the number one pick. How he's a unique athlete with unique skills and their man crush will continue. 

That is until after draft day; then it will be time for scrutiny and criticism from the same media that made him the "NFL Draft Day Darling."