The most common weight associated with the 2015 NFL MVP the past few seasons has been 260 pounds, and even that at times seemed on the light end for the 6-foot-5 player.
But coach Ron Rivera noted on Tuesday that Newton reported to training camp at 246 pounds. That came a day after Newton, who will be somewhat limited throwing when practice begins on Wednesday night after undergoing shoulder surgery in March, showed off his improved conditioning in an Instagram post.
“I’m pretty excited about where he is right now," Rivera said of Newton’s conditioning.
Rivera also is excited about his quarterback’s confidence, which he said during NFL owners meetings needed rebuilding after a 6-10 campaign in which Newton statistically had his worst season.
He said this even though Newton hasn’t thrown in practice since the end of last season.
“I think it’s very high right now, and part of it is because of all the work he’s put in this year," Rivera said of Newton’s confidence. “He has done a great job. He’s had a tremendous offseason. And from what I hear on how things went in Baltimore, his confidence level is very high.
“Now as we go into training camp and start playing, I believe he’ll just build it every day."
Newton hasn’t been cleared to practice fully. He will be on a pitch count at least early in training camp while he rebuilds strength in the shoulder. The most he’s thrown since the surgery came last week with several of his receivers at the Under Armour facility in Baltimore.
Rivera wouldn’t say what the pitch count would be, only that Newton will continue to work with team trainer Ryan Vermillion and the doctors during camp.
“Cam will do what he’s slated to do," Rivera said. “He had a good week last week from what I understand. I’m excited to see him in action."