Does Player's Speech Predict NFL Performance?

Does Player's Speech Predict NFL Performance?

Imagine you're Carolina Panthers general manager Marty Hurney. Your team went 2-14 last year. You have the first pick in the NFL draft on Thursday. All of the pundits are predicting that you will take Cam Newton, the explosive Auburn quarterback who won the Heisman Trophy and led his team to the national championship. You absolutely need a quarterback to be the cornerstone of your franchise. Is Cam your guy?

You have his college stats. You have his highlight reel. You watched him work out at the NFL combine. You have his score on the Wonderlic—the controversial intelligence test that's been administered at the combine since the 1970s. Your coaches have interviewed him. Your scouts have timed him. You've asked around about his character, his on-field demeanor, his football smarts. What's left to consider?

Would you believe me if I told you that they should listen to his post-game interviews? Here's Newton discussing Auburn's opening-week victory over Arkansas State last year:

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