Cameron Jerrell Newton was born in Atlanta, Georgia on May 11, 1989. A quarterback for the Carolina Panthers, he won the Heisman Trophy during his college football career and was named as both the Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year and the Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Year for 2011.
After attending Atlanta's Westlake High School, Newton became one of the highest-rated quarterbacks in the nation and accepted a scholarship offer from the University of Florida. He played for the Florida Gators in 2007 and 2008, but transferred to Blinn College in 2009, after being arrested for stealing a computer. Then, in 2010, he moved to Auburn University. His season with the Auburn Tigers was immensely successful, as Newton led the team to the BCS National Championship Game, where they beat the Oregon Ducks. Newton was awarded the Heisman Trophy, the Walter Camp Award, the Maxwell Award and was named the AP Player of the Year.
In the 2011 NFL Draft, Newton was chosen as the first overall pick by the Carolina Panthers. In the process, he became the first player since 1950 to win the Heisman Trophy, win the National Championship and become the first overall NFL Draft pick in space of a year.
Newton was installed as the Panthers' starting quarterback in September 2011, placing him ahead of Jimmy Clausen and Derek Anderson. On his NFL debut, against the Arizona Cardinals, he became the first quarterback to throw more than 400 yards during his first ever game, breaking a rookie passing yards record previously held by Peyton Manning. In his second game, he became the first player to ever start his career with two consecutive 400 yard passing games. By the end of the year, he became the first rookie quarterback to throw 4,000 yards in a single season and set a new record for the most rushing touchdowns by any quarterback in a single season. In addition to being named Offensive Rookie of the Year and NFL Rookie of the Year, Newton was also selected for the Pro Bowl.
Although his second season, in 2012, was seen as something of a "sophomore slump", Newton led the Panthers to a 12-4 record in the 2013 season and made his first NFL Playoff appearance, albeit in a losing effort against the San Francisco 49ers. He was subsequently honored with the second Pro Bowl selection of his career.
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