- David Newton, ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter
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Continuing my look at the most memorable plays during the Carolina Panthers' 2013 season is a play that legitimized Cam Newton as a quarterback that could lead his team to victory in the clutch against a quality team
The play: (Nov. 18) Newton completes a 25-yard touchdown pass to Ted Ginn Jr. with 59 seconds remaining to cap the biggest victory of his career at the time.
The final score: Panthers 24, Patriots 20
Why it made the list: Because until that moment, Newton hadn't been taken seriously as a player that could lead his team to victory in the final minutes. And make no mistake, this 13-play, 83-yard drive was all about Newton. He had a 15-yard run on third-and-6. He gained three yards up the middle on third-and-2. Then on second-and-15 from the New England 25, he floated a perfect pass to Ginn near the 10-yard line that the speedster converted into the winning touchdown. It capped a game in which Newton led Carolina in rushing with 62 yards on seven carries and compiled a 125.4 passer rating. "I hear the statistics of all the other guys having game-winning drives; now Cam has his game-winning drive against a worthy opponent," wide receiver Steve Smith said. "Watching that young man grow, that 24-year-old Cam Newton just chipping away, and a little bit of his greatness is starting to shine through. And it was fun to be a part of." Said coach Ron Rivera: "Cam did the things he needed to do to put us in position to win the football game. It has a lot to do with his maturity that we have talked about." With that play, the rest of the nation watching on 'Monday Night Football' began talking about it as well.
Continuing my look at the most memorable plays during the Carolina Panthers' 2013 season is a play that legitimized Cam Newton as a quarterback that could lead his team to victory in the clutch against a quality teamNo.