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“He’s an exceptional athlete, and he’s excelling right now and doing a great job for his team,” Newton said.

Newton experienced the high of a successful rookie season, similar to the one Griffin is enjoying now. But his second season has been wrought with difficulty as defenses have adjusted.

The Panthers are 1-6, having lost four consecutive games by a total of 12 points. Newton’s passer rating is 75.2, down from 84.5 last season. He has more interceptions (eight) than touchdown passes (five), and his completion percentage is only 57.1.

Newton described it as “humbling.”

“Some people have changed up the way they cover,” Rivera said. “You see a little bit more what people call soft zones, where they just try and say, ‘We’ll just keep everything in front of us and keep our vision on the quarterback. That way, if he scrambles, he can’t hurt us.’”

Understanding the pitfall of familiarity, Griffin leaves it up to coaches to continue to tweak the Redskins’ scheme and stay a step ahead of defenses.

It has worked so far, but Griffin is mindful of how Newton’s second season is unfolding. It’s another similarity he would rather avoid.

For now, in the midst of his own rookie hype, he’s grateful for his personal success while the quest for team goals continues.

“You try to appreciate everything and try not to weigh too much on your personal success so that you don’t have to be humbled,” Griffin said. “I don’t want to ever need to be humbled because I always appreciate things and make sure I continue to forward and try to do better.”