Panthers Ryan Kalil on the Cam Newton hits “It doesn’t feel right”

Carolina Panthers pro bowl center Ryan Kalil has weighed in on the league’s treatment of Cam Newton and even has an answer to the problem. Kalil recently took to the airwaves to talk about it.

“It doesn’t feel right” Kalil said. “There’s times too when I think to myself, Cam, you can’t put yourself in that position where you are going to take a lick. He will put himself in a position where there are good, legal hits on him. And guys are sort of trying to remind him that if he is going to do that, this is going to happen ”

Kalil knows there is a difference between a legitimate hit on Cam Newton, and those of a questionable nature as we saw when the Carolina Panthers played in Denver last week.

“I would argue though, in that game especially, more often than not that was not the case” Kalil said of the Denver hits to the head. “Because he is such a big guy, because he runs around a lot and we have plays designed for him to run the football, that they sort of┬áthink it meshes all together.”

This is probably the most logical and accurate assessment I have heard in this whole mess that started last Thursday. NFL players have grown accustomed to just treating Cam Newton like a runner, and they are getting away with it. Except for the occasional fine, nothing has been done. According to Kalil, fines don’t matter anyways.

“A lot of guys don’t care about fines” Kalil said. “If they can win, and what they did can help the team win, I would argue they really don’t care about fines. So fines is not what is going to do it. It is making sure that these kinds of actions get penalties for them. ”

“Those guys are not going to stop, because nothing is happening” said Kalil. “Whether a guy is going to get fined or not, you don’t know that in the middle of a game. You’re just trying to win. The only way to stop a guy is to punish the team, and that is throwing a flag.”

“Why wouldn’t you keep hitting the guy that is leading the offense if you are getting away with it?”

Indeed this problem doesn’t seem like it will be fixed anytime soon. However, Ryan Kalil does know what will go a long way in fixing the problem, and that is finally having full time NFL officials.

“It is absurd to me with as much money as there is in this sport, and as much that is on the line, that these guys are not full time. I don’t think its fair to the game, I don’t think it is fair to the refs. We ask so much of them. We are constantly changing the rules on them.”

Kalil is absolutely right. Think about this for a moment. With the billions of dollars exchanged each year around the NFL, they do not have full time officials. Everyone you see in black and white on the field is a part time employee, and in most cases hold a second job. If the NFL is indeed concerned with player safety, as they say they are, wouldn’t hiring a few more full time employees be a priority?


Jeremy Igo is owner of Carolina Huddle. Based in Charlotte, he has covered the Carolina Panthers for over a decade.