Auburn football legend: Pat Mahomes owns 'face of the league' convo over Lamar Jackson

Cam Newton believes Pat Mahomes will have the NFL's "face of the league" title until Lamar Jackson wins a Super Bowl
Cam Newton believes Pat Mahomes will have the NFL's "face of the league" title until Lamar Jackson wins a Super Bowl / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

Until Lamar Jackson adds a Super Bowl win to his list of accomplishments, he will have to accept that the NFL's "face of the league" is Pat Mahomes -- this, at least, according to Auburn football legend Cam Newton.

“In modern-day [if] somebody were to say who's the face of the NFL right now: Patrick Mahomes,” Newton said on the latest edition of his 4th & 1 podcast (h/t ClutchPoints). “For as great as Lamar Jackson is and has been, there's never been a point in time where somebody has dominated the MVP race and polls of unanimous winner like Lamar Jackson has. But it's still Patrick Mahomes because of one reason and one reason only: three Super Bowl rings.”

If anyone knows what Jackson is going through, it's Newton. "Superman" was the 2015 NFL MVP but never got his due after failing to lead the Carolina Panthers to a Super Bowl. Because of that, though, Newton was disrespected in retirement, with his New England Patriots tenure often used as ammunition against him.

Although he never officially announced he was retired, Newton has had to watch backup role after backup role go to less talented, but less outspoken, QBs instead. He's been forced to accept that his playing days are likely over.

Lamar Jackson risks suffering similar fate to Cam Newton with style of play

Jackson plays the game in a very similar manner to Newton. Whereas Mahomes is a scrambling threat as a last resort, Jackson and Newton invite the contact head-on and made careers of putting a hurting on defenders.

Unfortunately, Jackson's risks are similar to Newton's. And we've seen how that aged.

Jackson has missed 11 games total in his career, with the 2021 and 2022 seasons seeing five missed games from the Louisville product each. His durability will be something to watch in the coming years as he looks to finally catch up with Mahomes and not have his NFL journey end similarly to Newton's: tragically cut short by injuries.