Jake Delhomme Believes Carolina Panthers' Super Bowl Window Still Open

Jake Delhomme believes Carolina's Super Bowl window is still open, but the Panthers will need MVP play from Cam Newton

Tiki and Tierney
October 30, 2018 - 8:15 am

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Cam Newton has played seven NFL seasons, and in that time, we’ve seen his highest highs and his lowest lows. Yet, intrigue surrounds him.

What kind of guy is he?

“I’ve never been in a locker room with him as a teammate, but all the guys that have played with Cam, they’ve always said this: he had some growing up to do early on,” former Panthers quarterback Jake Delhomme said on Tiki and Tierney. “What they said was, ‘With his smile and his personality, he can just capture a room, a practice field, a game – immediately. He just has that presence about him.’ That is the good Cam. 

“But if there’s a bad Cam or maybe a younger Cam, he could really take it the other way,” Delhomme continued. “That’s the biggest thing that they were trying to get consistency out of. But former players that I’ve played with that I respected, that were true pros, they said he showed up early, stayed late and played hurt. Well, that’s going to give you ultimate respect no matter what.”

Newton, a former MVP, led the Panthers to an 11-5 record last year. But they went 0-3 against the Saints, including a 31-26 loss in the Wild Card round.

“This is going to be a huge year for Cam Newton,” Delhomme said. “Which direction will his career go? Will he get back to being one of the elite players and the MVP that he was? Or will he just become a guy that teams are going to be like, ‘You never know. You might get good Cam one day, but for the most part, he’s going to have some inconsistencies.’”

Carolina opens the season at home against Dallas on Sept. 9 before a pivotal road game in Atlanta on Sept. 16. The Saints, Panthers, and Falcons all won 10+ games last season, so every divisional game matters – a lot.

“I think (Carolina’s Super Bowl window is) still open,” Delhomme said. “I truly believe that. I think injuries, especially on the offensive line, are going to be so critical to this team. But the window is there. There’s some youth, some speed, some juice. I think it’s there. But this division is extremely difficult. I think Atlanta is going to be loaded this year. I think this is a team that can make a deep run, and they would be one of my Super Bowl picks. 

“But the Panthers have a chance,” Delhomme continued. “It’s going to go through Cam Newton. We all know that. If Cam is consistent and he plays well, he can carry wins. He can carry a team to wins. And Norv Turner has proven he can do that with quarterbacks. You never know.”