Caleb Williams

Cam Newton worries Caleb Williams' gift might also be his curse

Cam Newton revealed his biggest concern about Bears quarterback Caleb Williams

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To the surprise of absolutely no one, Cam Newton has thoughts about new Bears quarterback Caleb Williams.

On his "4th & 1 with Cam Newton" podcast, the former NFL superstar talked through the top quarterback prospects from this year's draft. While he likes almost everything about Williams as both a person and a player, Newton fears Chicago's new quarterback could be a double-edged sword.

"I think his gift can, and possibly will, be his curse," he said. "His inability to make the bold play. And also, how does he manage the expectations? That's the bad. You can't prepare for that."

Newton clarified that he knows Williams has the ability to make bold plays similar to Patrick Mahomes, but he's concerned about how he will handle the inevitable adversity that comes with being the consensus No. 1 overall pick.

"Motherf------ get an opportunity to knock your head off, they gonna try to knock your f------ head off," he said.

It takes a mentally strong person to operate at the highest level with a target on their back. It sounds like Williams proved to Bears GM Ryan Poles that he's the type to handle the pressure, but Newton's point is that the pressure might force him to become someone he's not.

"When you're in that position to be the franchise quarterback, you are created—almost shaped, molded—to be a certain type of person," Newton said. "Like a robot.

"Don't show the wild side. Walk the tight rope. But is that really who you are? So that's where I question, are you gonna be bold enough to be yourself."

Newton said it took a lot of "behind-the-scenes" work and a good support system from the Panthers coaching staff to grow into his unique self as a quarterback.

"Ron Rivera [former Panthers head coach] was one of those coaches that now I can appreciate," he said. "So when I had that mental security knowing that I could be me, I belong here, that's when I felt like I had the support.

"I would hate for Caleb to go through a situation, he goes through adversity, and now he starts feeling like he's losing the locker room. That's the worst feeling. And I didn't feel that until I went to New England."

So far, the organization, his teammates and the city have welcomed Williams with wide-open arms, painted fingernails and all. But as Newton said, he'll need to keep all that jazz through the good and the bad in order to succeed.

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