Ron Rivera told NBC Sports Radio Tuesday morning that Newton will learn from the sulky display.
"The one thing about Cam that I think a lot of people have to understand is he hates to lose. He really does. And a lot of great ones have that," Rivera said, via Pro Football Talk. "Unfortunately, we just didn't win the big one. I think he'll learn and grow from this situation and come back stronger next year."
The competitor excuse is shallow. There are many competitors -- Tom Brady, Russell Wilson, to name two -- who stand and face the music after tough losses. Still, in the end, the flaming hot takes based off Newton walking off the podium are pointless and should have no factor in how the quarterback is perceived in the future.
More concerning for Newton and his coaches would be the beating he's taken for not diving on the fourth-quarter fumble, which effectively ended the game. When dissecting the play, Rivera again backed his franchise quarterback.
"I think he was looking for the rebound. When that group of guys came diving in, when it ricocheted backwards, he tried to turn and get after the ball. When you look at the circumstances he was looking at, I have no problem with that," Rivera said.
After a painful loss in which the Panthers never seemed to exude the overwhelming confidence that led them to a 17-1 record, Rivera said his team needs to get its swagger back and attack 2016.
"Just rebuilding the confidence, getting that swagger back that we're going to need heading into next season," Rivera said. "Right now we're down, I know that, our players feel it, but we've got to get it back and get it back early."