NFL Nation

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Two days after the Carolina Panthers improved to 9-0 with a win at Tennessee, the fourth-quarter dance by quarterback Cam Newton remains a hot topic.

Rosemary Plorin of Nashville, Tennessee, who attended the game with her 9-year-old daughter, sent the Charlotte Observer a note she wrote to Newton questioning whether he set a good example with his dance called the “dab.”

That brought a series of reactions from NFL players such as 49ers wide receiver Torrey Smith and Rams defensive end Chris Long.

Here’s an excerpt from the letter:

“Because of where we sat, we had a close up view of your conduct in the fourth quarter. The chest puffs. The pelvic thrusts. The arrogant struts and the ‘in your face’ taunting of both the Titans’ players and fans. We saw it all.

“I refuse to believe you don’t realize you are a role model. You are paid millions of dollars every week to play hard and be a leader. In the offseason you’re expected to make appearances, support charities, and inspire young kids to pursue your sport and all sports. With everything the NFL has gone through in recent years, I’m confident they have advised that you are, by virtue of your position and career choice, a role model.

“And because you are a role model, your behavior brought out like behavior in the stands. Some of the Panthers fans in our section began taunting the hometown fans. Many Titans fans booed you, a few offering instructive, but not necessarily family friendly, suggestions as to how you might change your behavior.

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“My daughter sensed the change immediately – and started asking questions. Won’t he get in trouble for doing that? Is he trying to make people mad? Do you think he knows he looks like a spoiled brat?”

Smith responded to the letter with a message suggesting too much is being made of Newton’s dance.

1. It’s not that serious 2. She is lying what 9 year old says that 3. Has she ever been to recess at her kids school https://t.co/9r15BoLNp3

Long wrote a series of tweets that mentioned rage and more outrage.

It just takes a special level of odd to craft a letter like that over something like that.

I do think we are overestimating the existence of the #dancerage demographic (maybe my timeline exists in a bubble)

We do like to highlight isolated stupidity on the Internet, which makes it appear more widespread than it is.

2015 internet we even feed the existence of outrage to become outraged. Double outrage. Outrage inside of outrage. Outrageception.

To my point search “cam newton dancing” in the Twitter search bar… It’s encouraging today, to my point. Ok I’m done.

Fans are reacting, too. Here is an entire series of Twitter posts, including one from the team’s official website.

Newton said after the game that he did the Atlanta-based dance (mixed in with a little “Hit Dem Folks” move) instead of his patented “Superman” celebration following his 2-yard touchdown at the suggestion of his younger brother, Caylin.

Caylin is a quarterback in Newton’s hometown, Atlanta.

“He’s always teasing me, ‘Hey, brother, you need to do something, like, cool,’ ” Newton said. “I said, ‘OK, tell me what to do.’ He said [Newton goes to a deep tone], ‘Dab on them folks.’ In that tone, too. He’s only like 16, but he has an Adam’s apple out of this world.”

Newton said he meant no disrespect to the Titans. He reminded everyone that he’s “a kid at heart.”

“I’m not doing it to be disrespectful to nobody, more so just doing it just to shine light and get people a smile and having fun doing what I do,” Newton said.

Newton’s dance is spreading in Charlotte, according to a tweet by running back Jonathan Stewart.

Maintenance crew in my building wanted to #DabOnThemFolks #CamNewton #KeepPounding pic.twitter.com/q06Dnadd2P

But Newton’s dance angered linebacker Avery Williamson to the point of getting in the quarterback’s face.

Tennessee interim coach Mike Mularkey on Monday called it a “rub-it-in-your-face” type of deal and referred to a code of ethics.

Carolina coach Ron Rivera defended his quarterback, saying the dance didn’t cross the line into taunting.

“As long as I don’t feel he’s instigating things, I don’t think there should be issues,” Rivera said.

This is the second straight week much of the attention after a Carolina win has been on something surrounding Newton outside of football.

Last week, a Green Bay fan from Fayetteville, North Carolina, was outraged that Newton ripped down a “North Carolina Cheeseheads” banner from the stadium wall prior to a Carolina victory over the Packers.

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On Monday, after Rivera gave players the day off, Newton was at the stadium studying film in preparation for Sunday’s game against the Redskins.

Meanwhile, the reaction about his dance intensified from fans such as the mother from Tennessee. Here’s how she ended the letter:

“I don’t know about your family life Mr. Newton, but I think I’m safe in saying thousands of kids watch you every week. You have amazing talent and an incredible platform to be a role model for them. Unfortunately, what you modeled for them today was egotism, arrogance and poor sportsmanship.

“Is that what your coaches and mentors modeled for you, Mr. Newton?”

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