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2011 NFL Draft: Could Cam Newton Go First Overall?

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When Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck announced he would be returning for his senior year, it seemed like the Carolina Panthers, holders of the No. 1 overall pick, would be stuck drafting a defensive lineman. No quarterbacks that actually are part of the 2011 NFL Draft seem worthy of the top pick, at least in my opinion. Gil Brandt, an analyst for and former Dallas Cowboys executive, strongly disagrees, as he would be shocked if Auburn's Cam Newton isn't the top overall pick.

"It would shock me... if he's not the first player picked," Brandt said Monday. "If I was drafting and I had Carolina's [No. 1] pick, I'd feel really good about who I was getting as far as ability. I just hope he realizes how hard he needs to work. You can have all the ability in the world but if you don't work like Drew Brees, Peyton Manning or Aaron Rodgers, you're only going to be semi-successful."

I don't think Newton's work ethic is the issue, but rather his attitude in general. He certainly has the potential to be a great player in the NFL, but things like this would concern me if I was a team thinking about making him my franchise QB:

Newton: "I see myself not only as a football player, but an entertainer and icon.''

All I can say is that if Matthew Stafford made a statement like this a couple months before the draft back in 2009, I would have been very wary of the Lions drafting him. Admittedly I was wary of drafting a quarterback anyway, but if Stafford had said something about wanting to be "an entertainer and icon," I would have had a tough time taking him very seriously as a football player.

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