Newton rushed ahead immediately on a called running play. No team was better in short-yardage situations than Carolina in 2011. The Buccaneers saw it coming all the way. Five defenders stuffed Newton for no gain.
It's not Newton's fault his offensive line couldn't block. Two third-quarter interceptions, however, were on him. He forced a ball into coverage that was picked off. He hung another pass up long enough for safety Ahmad Black to make a play on it.
"I think the second one was more disgusting," Newton said via the Charlotte Observer.
"He did make some mistakes and it was, at times, unlike him," coach Ron Rivera said.
It's only one game. We believe Newton is going to be one of the elite quarterbacks of this season. It will be fascinating to see how he responds."I don't know what you want me to say," Newton said with a sigh. "No one likes losing."