The Carolina Panthers lost the Super Bowl last night and I was sad.
But I was proud to see this - - -
If you watched the pre-game show, you saw both these guys being interviewed.
Peyton Manning said some pretty cool things about Cam Newton.
When Newton heard what Peyton Manning had said, you could see his eyes light up.
And he has said, more than once, how much he admires and respects Peyton Manning. AND the game of football.
What's obvious is that this young man is an exuberant individual. One who has feelings - and they run deep.
Was I disappointed in the Cam Newton I saw in the post game interview?
My heart hurt for him.
Do I think he'll come to regret his actions during this interview?
But I have to ask myself, and ask others, if you're Cam Newton, a man who has feelings often worn on his sleeve and possesses so much joy, wouldn't you think those deep feelings can go just as far and just as extreme in the other direction.
He was emotional, and what do a lot of us do when we're emotional?
Well. Some of us cry.
Even if we're men.
Did Cam Newton want to cry on national TV in front of millions of people?
Of course not. But that doesn't mean the tears weren't close.
Truth of the matter is - we just don't know.
The hype of any pre-game event for any sport is brutal.
Remember how many people hated Joe Namath for so long because of things he said before that Super Bowl against the Colts? I do.
It's so easy to judge, isn' it?
But how many of you know that while Cam was having that interview he could hear Denver Brocos cornerback Chris Harris talking about their game plan and questioning Newton's ability to throw the ball.
And, oh yeah - want to talk about Bill Romanowski calling Newton "boy" on Twitter?
Y'all. Sports are brutal.
And I'm sorry, but if you're a person with an ounce of sensitivity, it's gonna hurt.
I expect we'll see Cam Newton mature over the next few years. And I can only hope it's not at the cost of his child-like joy in a game he loves.
But, you know - there are an awful lot of people out there who are going to enjoy trying to knock it out of him.
If I'm anything, I'm loyal. and I choose to stay loyal to The Carolina Panthers AND to Cam Newton.
I do have a few words I would love to say to Deion Sanders. A guy who also had more than a few detractors when he was younger and less aware of his apparent newly found wisdom when it comes to how to handle these sorts of things - - Deion? Hey, man - shut. up. Give a brother a break, what say? And maybe a little one-on-one advice rather than ragging on him in the media?