CAROLINA PANTHERS UPDATE 

lNEWTON SAYS HE'LL KEEP RUNNING... BECAUSE THAT'S WHO HE IS

Following up on this week's Team Notes. ... In Cam Newton's Week 6 return from a concussion, the quarterback rushed just one time, scampering to the pylon for a two-yard touchdown.

Newton wasn't in the mood to talk following the team's loss to the Saints. After the bye week, the defending MVP was more than willing to open up about his concussion experience, saying he learned from putting his guard down before taking the hit.

According to NFL.com's Kevin Patra, Newton also said he has no plans to ditch running to protect himself from future hits to the head.

"Even through the game, I know everybody's watching going 'How many times is Cam gonna run?..." he said Wednesday. "That's who I am. I would prefer to be involved in the game. I know, as the Panthers, that's our edge.

"There's certain things that I look at quarterbacks around this league and say 'Damn, I wish I could do that.' Man, I wish I could win football games and make it look so cool like Tom Brady. Man I wish I had the throwing accuracy and throwing style like a Matt Stafford or Aaron Rodgers. You see young talent like the Colin Kaepernicks, the Russell Wilsons, the Andrew Lucks, and guys like that. But my edge is running the football inside the tackle. When somebody tries to take that away from me, for what it is, that's who I am, that's me. That's gonna forever be my edge in this league."

Newton understands his unique running ability makes the Panthers offense move. With defenders constantly required to monitor the quarterback outside the pocket, passing lanes and running lanes for backs open.

"I look at the game different. That makes defenses prepare for extra things," Newton said of his ability to run. "So if you take that away, the defense is like 'Yes, we don't have to prepare for a quarterback.' I'm trying to find any and every way to create edges for us, whether that's me running around. ... I'm just trying to win football games. I hate that feeling, coming home knowing that we had our opportunities. Every single game we've played in we've had them. But nobody wants to hear that. They just look at the most important stat in all of sports, and that's your record."

As Patra noted, Newton's size allows him to take huge shots that would take down other running quarterbacks.

As long as his legs still give him an advantage over defenses, the Panthers quarterback isn't going to shy away from contact.

Meanwhile, as ESPN's Mike Clay notes, the Panthers were on bye in Week 7, but Greg Olsen remains the top-scoring tight end in fantasy.

Powered by 39 receptions, 610 yards and two touchdowns, Olsen is the only tight end in the league who has finished each week 12th or better at the position in fantasy points. In addition, Clay notes that Olsen has seen seven end zone targets on the year, which is tied for seventh in the NFL.

Newton's go-to target is right there with Rob Gronkowski at the top of the rest-of-season tight end rankings.

But the going won't be easy this weekend.

Arizona has not allowed a touchdown in its last two games. Actually, it is nine consecutive quarters if you count the 15-minute overtime period this past Sunday.

With the addition of outside linebacker Chandler Jones and the return of Tyrann Mathieu from knee surgery, this defense was supposed to surely be improved. The Cardinals sputtered in the season-opening loss to Tom

Through seven games, Arizona ranks second in the NFL in total defense -- allowing an average of 289.6 yards. They are third against the pass, 13th against the run.


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