I’ve never been a Cam Newton fan. It’s rare that a coddled golden child grows into a mature adult, and he certainly lent credence to that theory last night during the Super Bowl’s postgame press conference.

Granted, I wish that Falcons’ quarterback Matt Ryan had Cam’s physical abilities, but given the choice between Superman and Matureman, I’ll take Matureman on my team.

Given the theivery that got him kicked off the University of Florida football team and the clouds that surrounding his recruiting at Mississippi State and Auburn,  he probably should add a little humility and class to his repertoire of skills. Cam’s gotten away with an awful lot to this point in his life, so he probably should appreciate that and move on toward growing up and showing true leadership.

True leaders face the music when they lose and don’t pout like a spoiled 12-year-old child who didn’t get his way. You don’t have to be happy about it. If Cam wants to be a leader someday, he needs to behave like a man when faced with adversity — especially if he is going to flaunt his childlike exuberance with every first down he makes.

I was put in the awkward position of rooting for the Panthers — an  NFC South rival of my Falcons — yesterday only because I’m a big fan of Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis, one of the toughest and classiest players in the league (not to mention he’s a former Georgia Bulldog). But when I realized the game was turning toward the Broncos late, I was happy to see Peyton Manning ride off into the sunset as a champion — and I appreciate the classy way he did not declare his retirement so as not to steal the thunder from their team accomplishment. He knows he’s retiring, and so does everybody else, but he wasn’t going to steal anyone’s glory. He wasn’t going to do anything that said, “Hey, everyone, look at me!”

Unless Cam grows up, I hope he doesn’t get the same opportunity Peyton had to ride off into the sunset as a champion. There are too many other good guys in the league — like Thomas Davis — who deserve that opportunity. If Cam doesn’t grow up, I hope he joins forces with Johnny Manziel and forms a new football league for spoiled brats. They could recruit Bill Belichick to coach, and Donald Trump should be available to serve as commissioner.

Here’s what the New York Times had to say about Cam’s petulant behavior.