Cam Newton

NFL Comparisons for Draft Prospects

There really isn’t a perfect comparison for Patrick Peterson because the NFL has never seen a player with his size and athleticism. But in his era, Rod Woodson was the equivalent - a man with cornerback skills and safety size. Woodson went on to a Hall of Fame career, as both a cornerback and safety, and Peterson could follow a similar career path in the pros. Read more
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft Comments Off

5 early bold predictions for the NFL Draft

5. A trade occurs within the first five picks
The Panthers would love to trade down. The Broncos probably feel the same way. With two quarterbacks possibly coming off the board within the first five picks, someone is going to trade up to ensure they get their guy. My money’s on the Cardinals moving up for Gabbert, possibly to No. 1.

4. The Patriots actually use both 1st-round picks
No one loves trading picks more than Bill Belichick, but this year the Patriots actually need their picks. There is enough talent at positions of need (defensive line, offensive line) that the Patriots will stay put and fill some holes. In the 2nd round is where we’ll see the Pats start making moves. 

The best player in the draft isn't falling as far as you may think

3. Patrick Peterson is off the board within the first six picks
Nearly every mock draft has Peterson falling to the 49ers.  Sorry to ruin your fun 49ers fans, but the best player in the draft isn’t getting past six different teams. If he falls to No. 6 the Browns will gladly end his fall, even if he doesn’t fill a glaring hole.

2. A.J. Green falls to the Washington Redskins
There are multiple scenarios in which this could happen, and I truly believe one of them will come true. In my most recent mock draft I have the Bengals selecting Julio Jones, which allows Green to fall to No. 10.

1. At least three quarterbacks will go in the 1st round
Newton and Gabbert are 1st-round locks. After that, it’s anyone’s guess as to who many come off the board next. However, I am confident that someone will reach for another quarterback in the 1st round. Maybe the Dolphins reach for Mallett or Locker. Maybe the Seahawks do the same. Maybe someone falls in love with Dalton or Ponder. Whatever happens, one of those guys is going in the 1st round, and possibly more.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, 49ers, Browns, Dolphins, Patriots, Redskins, Seahawks Comments Off

Browns are going to draft a quarterback

Mike Holmgren has faith in Colt McCoy. He’s made that very clear.

However, he also plans to draft a quarterback.

That admission shouldn’t come as a surprise, considering that both Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace are free agents. However, Holmgren also stated that he plans to meet with all of the top quarterbacks, which he indicated probably includes Blaine Gabbert and Cam Newton.

It will be interesting to see what Holmgren means when he says he will meet with all of the top quarterbacks. He said he will “bring them in, do our work and see what happens.”

Does that mean he plans to use some of his private workouts on guys like Gabbert and Newton?

If so, it’s a questionable decision and has to make you wonder how committed he is to McCoy. If they’re set to move forward with McCoy, it makes no sense to draft a quarterback in the 1st or 2nd round. So why waste a draft visit on quarterbacks that will be long gone by the time its worth considering a signal caller.

One would think it would be wise to focus on more realistic 1st-round options, and perhaps some mid-round quarterbacks such as Pat DevlinAndy Dalton and Ricky Stanzi.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Browns Comments Off

Cowboys targeting Cam Newton?

Jerry Jones has always been conservative when it comes to quarterbacks.

He hasn’t taken a quarterback in the 1st round since Aikman. He hasn’t overpaid for free agents, typically settling for relatively cheap veterans such as Drew Bledsoe and Vinny Testaverde. And he allowed Bill Parcells’ staff to develop Tony Romo.

But all that might change.

Jones admitted that the Cowboys will speak to Cam Newton at the combine.

That shouldn’t come as a surprise. As one of the most talented players in the draft, and one with lots of question marks, he’s going to speak to number of teams – many of which may never speak to him again.

Newton, however, seems to think the Cowboys may have a more serious interest. When asked about the Cowboys interest in him he responded: “Jerry Jones, man he knows how to get hold of me, let’s just say that.”

I’m hesitant to read into anything anyone says this time of year, because most of its nothing but B.S., but this comment has me intrigued. Has Jerry Jones really spoken with Newton on multiple occasions as that quote seems to suggest? If so, it would seem to indicate a very serious interest on the part of the Cowboys.

Taking a quarterback in the 1st-round would be a curious move, considering the Cowboys are not far from being a playoff caliber football team again. However, they are the Cowboys and Jerry Jones marches to the beat of his own drum. I’ve been saying all offseason that Newton will only be a 1st-round pick if an owner falls in love with him and Jones is certainly on the short list of guys who may make that decision for his franchise.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Cowboys 1 Comment

NFL Draft Q & A

Earlier this afternoon I took some time to answer a few of your questions on twitter. A lot of them really deserve more than just four or five word response, so I thought I’d take an few minutes to elaborate…

[quotetweet tweetid=38712523591131136]

It’s definitely possible that one or both could wind up in the top five, but I think they’ll ultimately fall a little further.

The Panthers aren’t taking a quarterback, despite some mock drafts linking them with Cam Newton. The Cardinals may consider it, but I think they’ll pass as well. Ken Whisenhunt really wants to bring in a veteran, and I think they will to appease Larry Fitzgerald as well.

That leaves the Bills. And after addressing their strongest position in the 1st round last year by taking C.J. Spiller, it’s anyone’s guess what they may do this time around. Newton and Gabbert are possibilities, but I think they’ll lean toward the best available player – A.J. Green or Patrick Peterson.

Read more

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Q & A Comments Off

Cam Newton to the Dolphins?

Recently Tony Pauline of DraftInsider.net reported that the Dolphins have been showing an interest in Cam Newton.

This confirms my belief that Dolphins owner Stephen Ross would continue to be over-involved with personnel decisions and push the team to consider Newton.

It’s really a very predictable formula. Owner gets frustrated with mediocrity, owner decides to step in, owner drafts athletic but ineffective quarterback. Just call it the Al Davis Guide to Running Your Franchise into the Ground. Or maybe it should be named after Bud Adams? Either one works.

For this very reason I’ve had Newton linked to the Dolphins in my mock draft for the past month or so.

Of course, first Newton needs to fall past the four or five other teams potentially interested in a quarterback, but I believe Newton’s character concerns will cause a number of teams to drop him down their draft board. Realistically, the Dolphins are one of only a small handful of teams that will seriously consider him.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Dolphins 1 Comment

If a QB works out, but no one sees it, does it change his draft stock?

Cam Newton is hosting a workout today. Normally this would be a big deal, but Newton’s workout is only open to the media; no scouts are permitted to attend.

Newton is fooling no one with this media "workout"

That’s like me saying I’m going to write an awesome scouting report, but I’m only going to let my mom read it.

Like Newton’s draft stock, this workout is all hype and no substance. It’s a weak attempt to generate publicity and hopefully influence teams through their fans. Unfortunately for Newton, most NFL front office executives will see through this B.S.

In reality, this workout can only have a negative effect on his stock.

Yes, some teams will be willing to look past the stolen laptop and the issues with his dad and Mississippi State – but if anyone was on the fence about his character and the circus that surrounds him, this stunt could sway them the wrong way.

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Cam Newton Scouting Report
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Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft 2 Comments

The Cam Newton circus continues

When I first heard about Cam Newton‘s February 10 workout I questioned the motivation behind the early workout. Shortly thereafter, we learned that not only was it an extremely early workout, but it would only be open to the media.

If you’re going to hold a workout and restrict access, usually scouts and coaches – your future employers – are not the ones you leave on the outside looking in.

Is Newton capable of answering the tough questions that await him at the combine?

This latest stunt is just the next in a long line of questionable decisions by Newton – or Newton’s dad as the case may be – and it’s going to cause scouts to ask lots of question.

Cecil Newton won’t be in the room with Cam at the combine when teams are asking him the tough questions. Some teams will poke and prod and try to push his buttons, probably asking some ridiculous questions regarding his relationship with his father. Teams want to know the truth about the money situation, the truth about the stolen laptop, the motivation behind the media-only workout and probably about lots of other seemingly trivial things in his life.

If “Team Newton” thinks Cam is a 1st-round lock, and this workout is just to generate publicity and increase his marketability, they are sorely mistaken. Nothing is guaranteed.

There are plenty of questions surrounding Newton’s character and teams will ask tough questions in Indianapolis. If they aren’t satisfied with the answers he will fall, and if he does, his stay in the NFL could be short lived – just ask Jimmy Clausen about that.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft Comments Off

Cam Newton Scouting Report

Cam Newton QB Auburn #2

Ht: 6’5

Wt: 248

Strengths:
Elite size and strength. Built like a tight end. Impressive mobility for his size. Has the speed to pick up yards with his feet. Strong enough to shake defenders off his back. Extremely tough to bring down. Does a great job keeping his eyes down field, even when on the run. Elite arm strength; can make any throw you ask of him. Accuracy is good when he sets his feet and takes his time to throw.
Weaknesses:
Serious character red flags. Arrested for stealing a laptop while at Florida. Potentially involved with requesting a salary from Mississippi State, before signing with Auburn. Plays sloppy at times; often does not set his feet and puts too much faith in his arm strength and loses accuracy as a result. Limited ability to read a defense; locks on to receivers and when it doesn’t work out he takes off.
Comments:
There’s no denying Newton’s raw talent, but I wouldn’t touch him early in the draft. None of his character red flags on their own are all that serious, but collectively they present a pattern of behavior which leads me to believe he will not be dedicated to becoming a great NFL quarterback. Someone will draft him in the 1st round and make him a starting quarterback, but ultimately he will fail. He may have enough talent to be a mediocre starter for a period of time, but he will never take his game to an elite level. I would prefer to avoid the headaches he’ll cause and steer clear. For more, see my blog post on Newton.
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2011 1 Comment

Jeff Fisher’s departure could impact Titans draft plans

My immediate reaction to the surprising Jeff Fisher news yesterday was: does this mean Vince Young is staying? ESPN’s Adam Schefter quickly put an end to that possibility, at which point my mind turned to their draft.

The Titans have been a fairly well-run organization from top to bottom during the Jeff Fisher era, but owner Bud Adams does have an Al Davis streak in him when it comes to the draft; and particularly when it comes to quarterbacks. Adams was instrumental in the Oilers decision to draft Steve McNair in 1995 (a decision which worked out just fine) and played an even larger role in the selection of Vince Young in 2006 (a decision which didn’t work out so well).

Bud Adams has always liked big, mobile QBs

Throughout the past five seasons it often appeared as though Adams was Young’s only supporter, which undoubtedly played a role in the rift that grew between Adams and Fisher, ultimately pushing them apart.

So now that Fisher and Young are both gone, Adams is left with no quarterback and a young coach whom he can easily control. In other words, if Adams wants someone in the draft, he’ll get him.

Considering their desperate need for a signal caller and Adams affinity for strong-armed, mobile quarterbacks, Cam Newton suddenly looks like a very strong possibility.

I mentioned this on Twitter last night, to which @TitansMCM (of MusicCityMiracles.com) replied: “Not as long as [Mike] Reinfeldt and [Steve] Underwood are in charge… I think Bud learned his lesson [after drafting Vince Young]. The key word there is think.”

There’s a strong possibility that he’s right, and Adams will remain hands off. But as he eludes to, you just never know with an owner like Adams. For whatever reason he seems to trust a certain type of quarterback and it may be hard to pass up a Heisman winner who fits that mold perfectly.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Titans Comments Off