Before you get too far into this blog, Cam Newton having surgery on a partially torn rotator cuff on March 30th is NOT the end of the world nor does it mean the Carolina Panthers will have a losing season.
But it is not a great way to start the 2017 season.
And yes, that season starts with organized team activities or OTA.
After surgery, he won't throw again for 12 weeks. So, no OTA with a Panthers offense that was hoping to "evolve."
No time to work and develop with a new slot receiver.
No time to get better with wide receivers Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess. Both of which who need to be BIG this season if this team is to get back to the playoffs and once again become a Super Bowl contender.
Timing between QB and WR is huge in football and the Panthers won't have a chance to do that until HOPEFULLY training camp.
And there is the silver lining. He should be back by Camp Wofford in late July, but that chemistry will have to come together QUICKLY.
While Cam is a very big piece of the Panthers success, OTA and mini camp will be just as important for the offensive line, secondary, defensive line, and all the rookies they draft and sign. So Cam not throwing will not stop the progression of this team in many other aspects that they still need to improve in.
Just my honest opinion, but I think this puts even more importance on #1, protecting Cam even more and #2, getting more out of the running game.
I'm thinking in the draft, this team will select a RB and hopefully that pick is Leonard Fournette out of LSU. That is if he is still available at #8. Some mock drafts now have him going earlier in the draft that the Panthers pick.
Carolina has already addressed the offensive line in free agency and have spent a lot of money at that spot. Time to invest in the running game.
Two things are a best friend for a QB. A nice security blanket at tight end and a great running attack. Cam has that at tight end in Greg Olsen and Jonathan Stewart is still a good RB in the NFL, but it is time to get the second half of the new "Double Trouble".
This surgery news has me convinced even more now about the Panthers draft plan.
Just my opinion...