Which is why Newton, who's a notorious sweet tooth, has cut back on gummy bears and other treats.
Benjamin appears to be near his listed weight of 245 pounds at the start of training camp, Jodie Valade of ESPN.com reports. This year marks the seventh for Rivera but first for many players and new coaches on staff.
He felt plenty of not-so little throbs last season, beginning with the illegal took he hits in Week 1 at Denver and continuing through that season-ending loss at Tampa, when he played hurt to show teammates he was a gamer. I just kept the pressure on. "I had a lot of time on my hands in February".
Patience has been a big factor for Newton in slimming down as well as taking care of his shoulder, on which he had surgery to fix a partially-torn rotator cuff in February.
Newton reported to training camp on Tuesday at Wofford College at 246 pounds - lighter than he has been in years - and Rivera said the league's 2015 MVP is on schedule in his rehab and should be ready to practice right away. "I'm going to take what the defense gives me".
Understandably, the entire organization and fan base are still somewhat nervous about Newton's shoulder.
At least on designed runs. More rollouts and quicker passes, aka: layups. I ain't going to lie.
"Yeah, do I have weapons?"
"I couldn't imagine talking to (Tom) Brady, or talking to Aaron (Rodgers) or talking to even Matt Ryan or (Drew) Brees and saying, 'Are you going to stay in the pocket all day?'" Newton said. I could care less. "I didn't want to speak it, I wanted to action it. People don't realize that football is a 12-month sport".
About an hour later, Newton - wearing a straw hat and madras shorts - sat down in the media room and offered his perspective on the Panthers' plans to run Newton less to preserve the tread on his 28-year-old body. "Are you really going to expect a lion not to roar?" Newton asked. "The thing that puts me at advantage most times is having that ability to run".