Two unsurprising things happened Saturday night at Indianapolis:
1) Cam Newton won the AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award (getting 47 out of a possible 50 votes).
2) Katy Perry flirted with Newton -- mildly -- in front of photographers.
Does either one stun anyone? It shouldn't. Newton easily deserves every rookie of the year award out there -- as I wrote earlier this month after doing a lot of research, his rookie year was the best any rookie has ever had at the NFL level.
And Perry? She's a masterful entertainer in that she always seems to be in the spotlight, which is what the Madonnas and Lady Gagas and Perrys of the world do. They either have a hot song, or they're hosting "Saturday Night Live" (Perry did that a few weeks back) or they're doing some world premiere of their latest video or they are mildly flirting with whoever else is hot at the moment.
And Cam is hot. It's a different sort of thing for the Panthers, who have never had a player as nationally recognized (although someone like Steve Smith or Julius Peppers has obviously done a lot more in his NFL career than Cam has of yet).
The key for Cam after all this attention?
Keep his eye on the prize. This postseason he has been in the headlines a lot. And it's fine to play (not very well) in the Pro Bowl and take a picture with Katy Perry and win a few individual awards, but there's a bigger goal out there. Newton wants to play in this game one year; not just be in the same city, looking photogenic.
He has kept his focus very well so far. Let's hope that doesn't change.
10 months ago