Cam Newton: ‘I don’t even feel safe’
‘Cam is correct. I support him 100 percent in this. I was disappointed it wasn’t called.’
Ron Rivera Carolina Panthers coach
CAROLINA Panthers head coach Ron Rivera backed up quarterback Cam Newton’s criticism of NFL officials for failing to call illegal hits against him.
Newton went off on officials after a 30-20 triumph over the Arizona Cardinals on October 30. He was particularly incensed about a below-the-knees hit by Cardinals tackle Calais Campbell on which no foul was called.
Newton said the hit bent his leg backward and could have torn a ligament.
“It’s really taking the fun out of the game for me,” Newton said. “At times I don’t even feel safe. And enough is enough.”
Rivera told reporters on October 31 that he agreed.
“Cam is correct,” the coach said. “I support him 100 percent in this. I was disappointed it wasn’t called. But I get the benefit of looking up at the screen and seeing it on replay. It confirmed what I thought. It’s difficult. You’d like to see those calls made. I’d love to see our quarterback get those calls.”
Rivera said that he thinks Newton’s size is the reason the flags aren’t being thrown.
“I think he gets a little bit of the Shaquille O’Neal treatment,” he added, a reference to the towering former NBA star.
“He’s a bigger guy for that position as opposed to some of the smaller quarterbacks of stature. When they get hit, they roll around to the ground. When he gets it, he absorbs them and it doesn’t look as bad.” –