While the debate rages on whether Cam Newton of Auburn is worthy of the first overall pick in the NFL draft, New York Giants defensive end Justin Tuck offers his own take on the subject. And it’s pretty simple.
“Would I take him at No. 1? Absolutely not,” Tuck said, according to Yardbarker.com. Tuck is an acknowledged fan of Newton, but he believes the quarterback’s playing style doesn’t fit in today’s NFL.
Speaking at a panel at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston, Tuck said, “In this league, the athletic quarterbacks don’t last long. It’s the quarterbacks that can sit in the pocket and take a picture of whatever defense we’re in and know in 0.3 seconds that a hot slant is going to be open, or in two seconds, with this pump fake, that safety's gonna step up. ... It's those guys that [teams] are looking for, and I don't think Cam is that player yet.
“If he comes into the league doing what he did in college, he won't be in this league for very long.”
That hasn’t stopped some analysts from putting Newton at the top of their draft boards. And with the Carolina Panthers, like many teams, in need of help at the position, if he doesn’t go first, he’s likely to go early.