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Panthers’ QB Cam Newton on refs: ‘I don’t even feel safe’

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has been at the center of safety in the NFL since a Week One concussion debacle came to the forefront. As a result, there’s been an ongoing debate about what the NFL needs to do to protect players like Newton.

According to the quarterback though, the efforts to improve safety for him may be coming a bit late as Newton already fears for his safety when taking the field.

“It’s really taking the fun out of the game for me,” Newton said in a postgame press conference after Carolina’s 30-20 win over the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. “At times I don’t even feel safe. And enough is enough.”

In particular, the quarterback objected to the way officials view hits against him while he’s in the pocket.

“I don’t think there’s a person that can go through what I go through and still keep their heads,” he said. “Hits to the head, that’s one thing. But when you’re not protected in the pocket, that’s another thing.

“The story of my life ever since I came in is, ‘Oh, oh, well, we missed that one. I’m sorry. I’ll try to get it.’ That’s bullcrap. As player in this league if we do something stupid we get fined. If you do something derogatory to somebody else, we get fined. I just can’t keep accepting, ‘Oh, we missed that one.’ Or ‘I apologize for doing that.’ Or ‘I didn’t see it.’ That’s horsecrap.”

At this point Newton has a very valid point to make to the NFL. At one point during Sunday’s contest, Cardinals defensive end Calais Campbell hit Newton below the knees, a call that would easily be made if it was to any other quarterback in the league, but he did not receive a penalty. According to Newton, that play was the breaking point for him.

“I’m speechless,” Newton said of the no-call on the hit. “I could’ve torn my ACL. That was the breaking point.”

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