3 Formations Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers Must Try Post-Fumblerooskie Success

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3 Formations Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers Must Try Post-Fumblerooskie Success
J. Meric/Getty Images
Cam Newton has the tools to play from a variety of offensive sets.

Fourteen games into his rookie season, Cam Newton has proven he can run an NFL offense.

He has already passed for 17 touchdown and run for 13 more in a Carolina Panthers (5-9) offense that scored only 16 touchdowns in 2010.

Newton is 18 yards shy of breaking Peyton Manning's all-time rookie record for passing yards with 3,722 entering Carolina's Week 16 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-10).

Coincidentally, he also broke former New England Patriots quarterback Steve Grogan's 35-year-old single-season record for rushing touchdowns by a quarterback against the Bucs in Week 13.

 

Big Plays and Trickery

Much of Newton's individual success can be attributed to his physical talent, hard work and football acumen; however, offensive coordinator Rob "Chud" Chudzinski's creative play-calling and his teammates' execution have played a more than equal part.

In an Aug 2011 article in the Charlotte Observer, Chud told reporter Ron Green Jr. that his offensive philosophy is to be aggressive and attack the defense with the vertical passing game as the foundation of his attacking scheme.

Newton and the Panthers have done just that.

The Panthers have had one of the best big-play offenses in the NFL throughout the season, gaining yardage in big chunks both through the air and on the ground, and Chud's ability to utilize the skills and talents of his quarterback and the rest of the offensive unit are the biggest reason why.

Added coach Ron Rivera this week, "Cam’s ability to run and throw, it just adds another dimension, It has been kind of neat to see the different things we’ve been able to do with him over the course of the season and show he’s an integral part of what we are and what we’re going to become."

Even if that includes the occasional trickery like the touchdown scoring "fumblerooskie" play inspired by The Little Giants' "Annexation of Puerto Rico" in Week 15 against the Houston Texans (10-4) or Legedu Naanee's 27-yard completion to Newton in Week 13 against the Bucs.

Far be it from me to interfere with the Panthers' offensive playbook, but if I could slip in a few pages, it might look something like this.

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