Cam Newton not being fined for handing footballs to young fans
Contrary to an Internet rumor that spread like wildfire, Cam Newton has not been fined over $250,000 by the NFL over the years for his patented act of handing footballs to young fans in the stands, something he has done since his rookie season in 2011.
The allegation that the Carolina Panthers quarterback has fun afoul of league policy appears to have first surfaced on Facebook.
The post features a quote from Newton discussing his 2014 car accident and has been shared, liked and further disseminated thousands upon thousands of times.
But the Charlotte Observer’s Jonathan Jones reports that he was told by a league spokesperson that not only hasn’t the NFL fined Newton for handing kids footballs, the league isn’t even charging the Carolina Panthers quarterback for the price of the footballs.
While it is true that a player can be fined $5,512 for throwing a football into the stands — related to a fan safety issue more than anything else — the mere act of handing a football to a fan in the stands is not a punishable offense.
The NFL has established an unflattering reputation that has resulted in it being referred to as the “No Fun League.” But in this instance, it appears allegations that suggest Newton has paid upwards of a quarter million dollars in fines for handing young fans footballs is nothing short of an inaccurate and unsubstantiated rumor at best and a complete and total hoax at worst.