Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton apparently doesn’t believe women know much about football.
His comments during a news conference Wednesday certainly suggested so.
“It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes,” Newton said after he was asked about a pattern that a receiver runs.
Several women, female sports journalists in particular, took much offense to Newton’s comments and voiced their thoughts on social media.
What’s kind of odd about Newton’s comments is that just two years ago, the NFL brought aboard its first female coach after Jennifer Welter was hired by the Arizona Cardinals for training camp as an assistant coaching intern.
Welter has since become head coach of Team Australia for the 2017 IFAF Women’s World Championship.
Katie Sowers, meanwhile, was hired in August by the San Francisco 49ers as an assistant.
She joined Buffalo Bills quality control coach Kathryn Smith, who in 2016 became the league’s first female full-time assistant.
But with major college football programs such as South Carolina hosting a “Ladies Clinic” to teach women about basics of football – even Fresno State held its own version during a “Ladies Night” at Bulldog Stadium in 2016 under former coach Tim DeRuyter – a debate arises again about how much does an average woman know about football.
Is it anymore or less than an average man’s football knowledge?
And would Newton have called out a male sports journalist if one asked about route running?
There certainly are more boys than girls who grow up playing football through high school.
According to statistics provided by the National Federation of State High School Associations, there were only 1,565 players who were female and played 11-man football during the 2014-15 school year.
By comparison, there were more than 1 million male football players.
Nonetheless, a number of women have pursued football beyond high school.
Plus, one doesn’t always need to have played football to be knowledgeable of the game.