Cam Newton calls new contract 'last thing on my mind'

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

Cam Newton is happy for Colin Kaepernick and his new contract. (USATSI)
Cam Newton is happy for Colin Kaepernick and his new contract. (USATSI)

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A week after 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick signed a six-year, $126 million deal (with $61 million in guaranteed money), Panther quarterback Cam Newton says he's unconcerned about a new contract.

Both players were drafted in 2011, but Kapernick, a second-rounder, was entering the last year of his rookie deal, while Newton, taken first overall, has a rookie contract that runs through the 2015 season.

On Tuesday, the NFL Network reported that Newton will want a contract with more guaranteed money and a higher annual salary than Kaepernick, something Newton dismissed a day later.

"For me, that's the last thing on my mind,'' Newton said, via ESPN.com. "The first thing is trying to get little anky right. I'm not worried about no money. I'm not worried about things I can't control.''

"Little anky" would be Newton's left ankle. He underwent surgery in March and is expected to be sidelined until next month.

"Physically, I'm coming along fine,'' Newton said. "I'm on pace to be right where I'm expected to be. Mentally, I'm bored. Watching film, going over those things, becomes monotonous.

"I know it's making me better. ... But six or seven weeks of the same thing, watching game film after game film, making the right corrections and helping those guys out at practice, you kind of feel [like], 'Man, I wish I could be out there.'''

Newton says he's not thinking about money, but former agent Joel Corry, who writes about contracts for CBSSports.com, told the Charlotte Observer that “I'm sure the Carolina Panthers will go, ‘Hey, we'll give you Kaepernick's structure, but (Newton's agent) Bus Cook is not going to be too receptive to that.”

Corry thinks it's more likely Newton will seek a Jay Cutler-type deal. The Bears quarterback signed a seven-year, $126.7 million contract in January that includes $54 million in guarrantees and $18 million annually.

For now, Newton, who says he's happy for Kaepernick, is focused on getting back on the field.

I'm excited about what Colin Kaepernick has done because he's a friend of mine,'' he said. "Those circumstances are different for the 49ers than it is for the Panthers -- different management, different situations.

"For me being the Carolina Panthers quarterback, it's my obligation to be 100 percent -- no limping, no gimping, no grimacing or nothing when it's time for me to be on that practice field."

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