Cam Newton passed a lot of tests with his record-breaking 422-yard, two-touchdown performance in Week 1.
The Panthers’ rookie QB also managed to impress Kurt Warner, who took note that Newton was working through his reads and staying in the pocket, which wasn’t always the case during the preseason.
“And that was probably the most impressive thing to me,” Warner told FootballOutsiders.com on Wednesday. “Watching the film and to know: Was he going through his reads? Was his first read open all the time? I was impressed with the way he stood in the pocket and delivered every throw. He made throw after throw accurately and got it to the right guy. He put the ball in position for his player to make the play.”
As much as Newton did the unthinkable against the Cardinals — in terms of his first NFL start — he also nearly led a comeback win, driving the Panthers to Arizona’s 6-yard line before coming up short.
“I think it’s impressive because a.) He’s a rookie and it’s his first game; and b.) because I don’t think anyone really ever saw that from him through the preseason,” Warner said of that final drive. “For him to come out and perform at that level — and I really think he played well enough for his team to win – was really one of the highlights of Week 1.”
Before we get ahead of ourselves, though, for all of Warner’s gushing, he also cautioned against reading “too much into one game.”