The average NFL rookie would be in awe of a scene like the Pro Bowl. It may not be one of the most highly-rated television events of the year, but the NFL’s All-Star game still brings together the most talented football players in the world and a number of future Hall of Famers.
Last year, Cam Newton was selected to the 2012 NFC Pro Bowl roster after an outstanding rookie season. According to a report from Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com, he walked into Honolulu like he owned the place. And not in a good way.
According to several players in the game, some from both teams, Newton’s standoffish, diva ways made him enemy No. 1 in the eyes of some of the players.
“He was a total —-hole,” one AFC player said. “Who did he think he was? He acted like the big sh–. Here he was at his first game and he acted like he was the star. Guys didn’t like that.”
Another player said a player asked Newton for his autograph — presumably to give to the player’s child — and Newton “big-timed” him by telling him “now’s not the time.” The same player also said he was also disrespectful to 13-time Pro Bowler Ray Lewis.
“That’s the godfather there,” one player said. “Can you believe he did that?”
When asked about the alleged exchange through the Ravens PR department, Lewis denied that Newton dissed him. However, several other players confirmed that it happened. As Prisco pointed out, that would help explain why several AFC defensive players cranked up the intensity when Newton came into the game and seemed to hit him harder than the other quarterbacks. That was not the case when rookie Andy Dalton took snaps for the AFC.
“Cam’s in his own world,” one of Newton’s NFC teammates said. “He’s a young guy and learning, but he better change. They started rushing him. We were like, ‘what are they doing? This is the Pro Bowl.’ They didn’t attempt that with the other guys. They went after him. He better learn soon. You don’t want to go out there and get hurt at the Pro Bowl.”
The report should shock no one when you take into account stories like this and this, but it certainly sheds some light onto what type of person Newton is if true. The Pro Bowl is generally a time for camaraderie and respect among the game’s best — not an opportunity for rookies to act like hot shots.
H/T The Big LeadGoogle+