Cam Newton is under fire for making a sexist comment to a female reporter during a press conference on Wednesday.
Carolina Panthers beat writer Jourdan Rodrigue asked the quarterback about wide receiver Devin Funchess’ improvements on the field. “I know you take a lot of pride in seeing your receivers play well,” Rodrigue said during the briefing. “Devin Funchess has really seemed to embrace the physicality of his routes and getting those extra yards. Does that give you a little bit of enjoyment to see him kind of truck-sticking people out there?”
Newton laughed and replied, “It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes like … it’s funny.”
Rodrigue responded to Newton’s comments on Twitter writing, “I don’t think it’s ‘funny’ to be a female and talk about routes. I think it’s my job.” Later she wrote, “I spoke with him after and it was worse. I chose not to share, because I have an actual job to do today and one he will not keep me from.”
Fellow journalists came to Rodrigue’s defense on Twitter. One wrote, “Brutal, sexist answer from Cam Newton in response to good question from female reporter. And the body language was just as bad.” Another said, “What frustrates me about Cam Newton’s comments: He’s not joking around with friends, he’s being condescending to a reporter doing her job.”
Lindsay Jones, who also covers the NFL, reminded everyone that women covering sports is nothing new. “Oh come on. Welcome to 2017 Cam Newton,” she said. “[Jourdan Rodrigue] deserves better than that.”