Cam Newton Could Become the Black QB Role Model That Michael Vick Never Had

Categories: Luke's Gospel
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Alex Izaguirre
Luther Campbell, the man whose booty-shaking madness made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. This week, Campbell addresses why African-American NFL quarterbacks don't have any heroes to look up to.

In baseball, African-American players can look up to guys like Vida Blue and Hank Aaron, who broke down racial barriers in their sport. In boxing, fighters can point to Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali for inspiration. On the hardcourt, ballers grow up wanting to be like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Julius Erving, and Michael Jordan. When he won the Masters, Tiger Woods saluted all the great African-American golfers who came before him and were not allowed to play in the game's most important tournament.

Yet when you talk about all-time great quarterbacks in pro football, the names most enthusiasts throw out are Joe Montana, Roger Staubach, Johnny Unitas, Joe Namath and Steve Young. No one mentions Doug Williams, even though the former Grambling State quarterback began his professional career in 1978 by guiding the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to its first three winning seasons -- and then capped it off with an MVP performance in Super Bowl XXII while leading the Washington Redskins to victory.

Williams is the only black QB to win an NFL championship, but you don't see or hear Michael Vick, Vince Young, and Donovan McNabb saying they want to be like the guy who passed for five touchdowns in the second quarter, a Super Bowl record. They don't even aspire to be like Warren Moon, the former record breaker for the Houston Oilers who is enshrined in the football hall of fame in Canada and the United States.

There's a reason for that. Vick, Young, and McNabb have been pacified by the NFL's insistence that they be conventional quarterbacks like Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Aaron Rodgers. The irony is that Vick, Young, and McNabb have been widely criticized for playing the game the same way Steve Young, Montana and Staubach always did, with attitude and athleticism. The NFL's three most prominent black quarterbacks would have won a Super Bowl by now if the franchises they play for allowed them to use their speed and quickness that made them superstars in little league, high school, and college.

Instead, Vick, Young, and McNabb became complacent, allowing team owners, general managers, and coaches to tell them how they play the game -- by dropping back in the pocket like the "prototype" quarterback. All the franchises want these 6'4" 200 pound guys to play the star offensive position but only Brady, Manning and Rodgers have had success in the conventional quarterback system. But consider the success of Drew Brees, a 5'11" guy who has won a Super Bowl and recently broke Dan Marino's passing record as an example of the success African-American play callers could achieve.

That's why I'm rooting for Cam Newton, the electric Carolina Panthers rookie from Auburn. I believe Newton will become the first African-American to truly give younger black quarterbacks -- such as Baylor University's Robert Griffin III, this year's Heisman Trophy winner -- someone to follow.

Follow Campbell on Twitter @unclelukereal1.

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15 comments
Calamanation
Calamanation

Rodgers and Roethlisburger are mobile qbs

Rm5679
Rm5679

I don't totally agree. Michael Vick still uses his athleticism. Look at his total running stats for the season. I think it's wise that he's learning to balance his running with a passing game, not to be like Brady or Manning, but for self-preservation. He's a small guy who has been in the league for ten years, and those big hits start to take a toll. Cam is a big fellow, who is actually a pocket passer but uses his scramble ability as a bonus.

Ouch
Ouch

Being tackled in the NFL is too dangerous for QBs to go through every few plays, then be expected to accurately pass.  Coaches/owners are trying to protect their most important/expensive asset by keeping them in the pocket.

Lorena
Lorena

my buddy's half-sister makes $73/hr on the laptop. Shehas been unemployed for 6 months but last month her pay was $8247 just workingon the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site...

LazyCash1[dot]com

Lorena
Lorena

@goo:disqus .......my friend's ex-wife makes $87 every hour on the computer. She has been without work for 8 months but last month her pay was $7242 just working on the computer for a few hours. Read more on this site... LazyCash1.com

Lorena
Lorena

my friend's step-mother makes $85 an hour on the laptop. She has been fired from work for 8 months but last month her check was $8792 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site...

LazyCash1.com

Lorena
Lorena

my friend's step-mother makes $85 an hour on the laptop. She has been fired from work for 8 months but last month her check was $8792 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site... 5pl.us/14r

BEasy
BEasy

I'm not sure I agree with you on this one Luke.  Vick has had ample opportunity to run. That's partially why he's injured so much.  Plus, he's not even over 6 feet much less 6'4" - he looks like a regular dude, not like a big, tough, Cam Newton. I do agree with the notion that most of these running QBs have been pigeonholed.  Cam is a great meld of both passing and running.  He's much better than Tebow but without the polarization that encircles him.  Hopefully Cam can show that being able to run is not a deficiency, it's an asset. 

Tom Brady and Peyton Manning are premier passers.  At the same time, I've seen them throw a ball away several times in a game when the coverage is too tight.  If they could run to get those extra yards instead of throwing the ball away, it would only add to their skillset and make them that much better overall football players. 

bigriggs
bigriggs

A guy who stole electronics while a college QB and threw them out a window when the police knocked on his door and then all the crap at Auburn with the alleged payments to his father should be hailed as a role model? Wow, that's just wrong.

Denoir
Denoir

@brigada:disqus .........my best friend's mother-in-law makes $83/hour on the laptop. She has been fired for 8 months but last month her pay was $7911 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site LazyCash4. com

BEasy
BEasy

This article seems to only address on-the-field play, not off-the-field issues.  Plus, Cam was cleared of any wrongdoing in the investigation into his father's alleged demand for payment.

Quick question, how long will it take for Cam to win you over and forgive him for any indiscretions while a college student?

bigriggs
bigriggs

On and off field issues should both be dealt with when talking about being a role model and if you don't think he and his father were not ninvolved with asking for money, I have beach front property in Iowa to sell you.

I will never respect any sort of thief. He is a hell of a QB but people should not forget nor dismiss his past. People can and do change but it's not smart to forget what he has done in the past.

bigriggs
bigriggs

Never been in trouble with the law. Outside of 1 speeding ticket 20 years ago, I have never broken the law. I think I will be fine.

Elijah Horton
Elijah Horton

I hope your friends and family employ the same attitude towards your misdeeds.

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