Putting Cam Newton's debut in perspective

September, 12, 2011
9/12/11
8:20
AM ET
Let’s turn to ESPN Stats & Information to put the debut of Carolina rookie quarterback Cam Newton in perspective.

Newton threw for 422 yards in a loss to Arizona. That’s the most passing yards ever -- by far -- for a player in his first NFL game.

The previous record was set in 1950 when Hall of Famer Otto Graham threw for 346 yards. Before Newton only five players had even passed for 300 yards in their debut and one of those was Peyton Manning in 1998.

If you go back as far as 1960, only three players had more passing yards in a season opener and those were Manning, Kurt Warner and Dan Marino, who already were established starters. Those three quarterbacks have combined for seven Associated Press Most Valuable Player awards.

About the only record Newton didn’t set was the Carolina record for passing yards in a game. He missed it by one yard. Chris Weinke threw for 423 yards in a game against the Giants in 2006. The Panthers also lost that game.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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