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Cam Newton: “Playoff football is a different speed”

49ers Panthers Football

San Francisco 49ers inside linebacker Patrick Willis (52) hits Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) during the first half of a divisional playoff NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)


The first playoff game of Cam Newton’s career didn’t exactly go to plan.

The Carolina Panthers were ousted from the playoffs in a 23-10 loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. Newton completed 16 of 25 passes for 267 yards and a touchdown. However, Newton also threw two costly interceptions and was sacked five times.

After the game, Newton noted how the speed of the game seemed to pick up an extra level in the postseason.

Playoff football is a different speed than regular season. I learned that firsthand today,” Newton said, via the team’s official website. “You have to seize the moment when the moment allows. We had too many opportunities that slipped through our hands, and that was just the story of the day.”

Carolina actually outgained the 49ers in the game (325-315) but San Francisco won the battle where it mattered. The Panthers ultimately just couldn’t finish off drives and put enough points on the board against a stout 49ers defense.

“Going into this game we were amped and ready to go, but you have to play four quarters of football, and we didn’t do that today,” Newton said. “A lot of credit goes to the 49ers and their preparation and how they executed the game plan today. We didn’t make enough plays.”