Cam Newton is a hobby magnet. As an award winning, dynamic national champion for a blue chip program in College, it was obvious that he was going to attract attention. That attention grew upon his selection as the number one pick in the 2011 NFL Draft. Now that he is well into his sophomore campaign, and not seeing the success he saw in his record setting rookie season, is Cam Newton really living up to the hype machine that was running behind him?
All through last year, you couldnt find a Cam Newton card that wasnt sought after by most of the hobby. In fact, as he got closer to the rookie records, it became more and more obvious that he was more of a special player than originally thought. Hell, I sure didnt think he was going to be good, and I sure didnt think he was going to be making history either. However, after proving the doubters wrong, he is making us reconsider with a less than stellar season so far.
Here are some of the sales so far, and there are still some high prices out there, no doubt:
The national media has been painting him as a diva-esque child with a selfish personality, and though that looks to be in the right vein, im not sure it matters the way that it is portrayed. I think that Carolina was a terrible team when they drafted Cam, and he made them better to the point that teams werent considering them a gimme anymore. Yet, just like last year, the holes on the team are widening fast, and collectors are starting to think twice before dropping a rent payment on his high end cards.
Couple that with general speculation over the authenticity of some of his autographs released by card companies, and there is an issue. Its not widespread yet, but Newton is slowly approaching the point where the casual collectors will give up on him. When that happens, a lot of the value ceiling will fall out from underneath him. Its going to take a lot longer for the Auburn and Panther fans to disengage, but that isnt where true value is derived from. Without a consensus that he can be a franchise QB, value is a temporary situation in my opinion.
Just like with the Wildcat that gave defenses headaches, it was only a matter of time before NFL defenses adjust. This is where players like RGIII will need to learn, as he will not be able to have success without an ever-changing playbook and tendency skill sets. Right now RGIII is looking pretty good, but how much of that is because many of the defenses dont have extensive tape to review? Now that Newton is no longer the question mark that people faced in 2011, they can easily penetrate the gaps in the Panthers’ mediocre team.
I hate buying into hype laden players, and Newton is a perfect example. Im not saying he has lost the tremendous potential, just that he doesnt have the same luster anymore. From the way its looking on the hobby side, not many people disagree with me.