There is no reason why this should be a quarterback competition at all. It’s pretty clear to me that Jimmy Clausen doesn’t have much of a future in the NFL. It is probably extremely harsh of me to say such a thing, but Clausen was beyond awful last season. Not only was he incapable of completing a pass, but he was also failed to make good decisions and was the worst quarterback in the league last year. Newly signed backup Derek Anderson is almost as bad, and his personality doesn’t make him a good mentor either. I understand that his one big season came under current Panthers’ offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski, but there’s also no reason for me to believe that he can come anywhere close to repeating that kind of success.
What I’m getting at here is that Cam Newton is clearly this team’s starting quarterback. You don’t draft a QB at number one for no reason. If you spend the first pick in the draft on a quarterback, you are essentially saying that you have nobody on this roster who is capable of taking the reigns; well, that statement was totally true before Carolina picked up Newton.
The league has evolved into a total WCO mentality; pass first, run later. The ball-control offenses based on running the football employed by former coach John Fox just don’t work in the year 2011; you need a signal-caller who is above the replacement level.
I’m already under the impression that Cam Newton is a far better player than Jimmy Clausen, and you need to start your best players; rookie or not. The Panthers were 2-14 for a reason; they didn’t have a legitimate quarterback. The team needs to do all they can to avoid another season like 2010, and the only way to do that is to start the best quarterback currently on the roster. As far as I’m concerned, that means that Cam Newton needs to start from day one; rookie or not. Carolina and head coach Ron Rivera need to come right out and declare publicly that Newton is starting right from the get-go, and they certainly need to rally around their prized rookie.