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Report: Cam Newton has put millions in endorsement income at risk

The backlash from Cam Newton’s sexist comments directed at Charlotte Observer reporter Jourdan Rodrigue earlier this week not surprisingly has been swift. And a report speculates the fallout could prove financially painful for the Carolina Panthers superstar quarterback.

A Forbes report estimates that upwards of $10 million in annual endorsement income could be at risk for Newton. The report suggests high-profile companies Newton does business with could potentially view him as toxic and “put his cushy off-field income in jeopardy.”

Newton is one of the NFL’s highest-paid players off the field with estimated earnings of $11 million this year from endorsements, appearances, royalties and licensing. He ranked second in FORBES’ look last month at the NFL’s highest-paid players with $34.7 million, including his $23.7 million from the Panthers year. His endorsements this year included Buick, Gatorade, Under Armour and Carolina Health Systems.

Newton spawned the swirling controversy by saying during a Wednesday press conference that it’s “funny to hear a female talk about routes” in reaction to a question from Rodrigue about Panthers wide receiver Devin Funchess.

The fallout from the situation — at least as it pertains to Newton’s endorsement income —  began Thursday with Dannon severing ties with the quarterback, who has been a pitchman for the company’s Oikos Greek yogurt brand going back to 2015.

Newton’s deal with Dannon reportedly was worth about $1 million annually.

Gatorade also condemned Newton’s comments Wednesday, although the PepsiC0 brand didn’t go as far as ending its relationship with him.

“Cam’s comments were objectionable and disrespectful to all women and they do not reflect the values of our brand,” read a statement from the company. “Gatorade fully supports women who compete in, report on, coach for, or play any role in sport — on or off the field.”

Newton remained surprisingly silent on the situation until Thursday evening when he posted an apology via social media platforms.

It remains to be seen if Newton’s apology will prove sufficient enough for sponsors to stick with him for the long haul.