How high can QB Cam Newton go?

December, 26, 2011
12/26/11
3:06
PM ET
We all know that Carolina rookie quarterback Cam Newton is having an outstanding rookie season.

Newton
Newton
But what does it mean going forward? In this Insider post, our friends at Football Outsiders use “similarity scores’’ to find historical matches for contemporary players. They compared Newton to some pretty outstanding quarterbacks during some pretty outstanding seasons (and we’re not just talking rookie years for the other guys).

Their conclusion? We’ve never seen anything like Newton before. They say that it’s fair to compare Newton to a young Peyton Manning as a quarterback and a young Herschel Walker as a running back. That’s pretty high praise.

I’ve been saying for a couple months now that Newton is different than anything we’ve seen. You can say he throws like a Manning, Dan Marino or John Elway. You can also say he runs like Michael Vick or Tim Tebow.

There have been quarterbacks before that you could say one of those two things about. But I think Newton is the first guy you can say both things about.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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