Cam Newton has been nearly unstoppable in the red zone this season.
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has always been a weapon both inside the red zone and on any other area of the football field where he is located. Able to both pass and run, Newton has been causing headaches for opposing defensive coordinators since his 2011 rookie season.
This year is no different except for a new offensive coordinator in Norv Turner who has worked to improve Newton’s accuracy numbers and design plays to better fit his quarterback’s abilities. Utilizing more quick developing routes, wide receiver screens, and improving Newton’s overall confidence in completing a check down option allowing his targets to gain yards after the catch, the Panthers franchise quarterback has been playing at an MVP level all season.
No where else on the field has this been more apparent then inside the red zone, an area between the 20-yard line and scoring goal line of the football field. Newton currently owns the best passer rating for this specific section, in addition to leading all quarterbacks with four rushing touchdowns.
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Critics have always pointed toward Newton’s passing touchdown numbers in an attempt to degrade his effectiveness but fail to remember that a touchdown is worth six points – regardless of its scoring method. An important fact to remember considering he set the NFL record for most rushing touchdowns by a quarterback in just his sixth season and currently has 58 total for his career.
Always able to execute on the ground, his improved performance through the air has seemingly increased the value of a quarterback many already believed to be priceless. Newton has thrown only seven incomplete passes once inside the 20-yard line and his 120.7 passer rating is nearly 10 points higher than his closest competitors.
Only halfway through the season, Newton still has opportunities to improve on each and should continue being the weapon Carolina needs in order to score touchdowns instead of having to settle for field goals.