Cam Newton earning respect of Carolina teammates

By Mike Cranston

Associated Press

Published: Thursday, June 9 2011 12:00 a.m. MDT

Carolina Panthers rookie quarterback Cam Newton, left, jokes with offensive lineman Travelle Wharton, right, during an informal football workout in Charlotte, N.C., Thursday, June 9, 2011.

Chuck Burton, Associated Press

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — While Cam Newton is quickly learning the NFL is more difficult than college, it hasn't dampened his enthusiasm and confidence as he prepares for the scrutiny of being the NFL's No. 1 overall draft pick.

And to listen to his Panthers teammates, Newton is saying and doing all the right things.

Newton and close to 50 of his new teammates completed two weeks of player-organized workouts Thursday morning. Newton says he's "got a grip" of the Carolina playbook despite not being able to talk to coaches because of the labor dispute. But Newton acknowledges there's a learning curve learning to read defenses and adjusting to the speed of the pro game.

Linebacker Jon Beason says Newton is a "specimen" and has showed "great leadership."

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