On Thursday, Fox Sports 1 radio host Colin Cowherd likened quarterback Cam Newton’s “polarizing nature” to that of xenophobic, racist and sexist GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, connecting the two by explaining that neither figure conforms to the stereotypical version of their respective roles.
Trump’s brash statements, pettiness and lack of discipline, he continued, is un-presidential -- while, according to Cowherd, Newton’s lack of humility and controversial on-field celebrations are perceived as not "quarterback-ial."
“If you look at who sells jerseys in the NFL -- Russell Wilson, [Tom] Brady, Peyton Manning -- [they] kind of act like servants to you,” Cowherd said. “We don’t want our people to go after winning an Oscar and say, ‘That movie was amaze-balls, I’m the man’ … It’s uncomfortable for us.”
Even as his Carolina Panthers have climbed to the top rungs of the NFL this season, Newton has faced constant critiques from seemingly every which way, most notably when the Charlotte Observer published a reader’s letter this fall that deemed him a bad role model for dancing in the end zone.
Moreover, only yesterday Newton publicly addressed the racial undertones he sees in much of this criticism, telling reporters: "I'm an African-American quarterback. That might scare some people. Because my skill set isn't like anybody else."
Cowherd, however, claims that the “pushback” Newton has received “ain’t a black thing” -- but rather comes back to this question of being "humble," or, in a regrettable choice of words, "act[ing] like" a "servant."
While it’s important to note that Cowherd himself is not endorsing these criticisms of Newton -- he’s actually praised Newton quite a bit in the last few years -- any comparison to the wildly controversial Trump is bound to turn some heads and ruffle some feathers.
And as Newton tends to spend his spare time volunteering and helping the community, while Trump has spent his last half-year spreading fear-mongering, divisive messages, we’re going to concentrate on the pair’s differences rather than the one or two similarities they may appear to share.
Also on HuffPost: