June 2, 2015 / 11:51 PM / 4 years ago

Panthers' Newton signs five-year contract extension

(Reuters) - Dynamic Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has signed a lucrative five-year contract extension that will keep him with the National Football League team through the 2020 season as he targets the franchise’s first Super Bowl.

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) throws under pressure against the defense of Seattle Seahawks outside linebacker K.J. Wright (50) during the first half in the 2014 NFC Divisional playoff football game at CenturyLink Field. January 10, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Though no financial details were revealed by the Panthers, local media estimate the deal to be worth $103 million, with $67.6 million guaranteed for the first three years.

“I’m so thankful for this opportunity,” Newton, 26, said during a news conference on Tuesday. “I live my life to inspire others, for that kid in high school or college facing adversity.

“I can’t state this enough. This does not change anything about his dream. It accelerates it.

“My main focus is trying to bring the Lombardi Trophy to the Carolinas by any means necessary,” said the twice Pro Bowler who became the first player in the NFL to accumulate 10,000 passing yards and 2,000 rushing yards through his first four seasons.

The Vince Lombardi Trophy is awarded each year to the winning team of the NFL’s championship game, the Super Bowl.

Newton, the first overall pick by the Panthers in the 2011 NFL Draft, has thrown for 14,426 yards, 82 touchdowns and 54 interceptions during his four-year league career.

He led Carolina to the postseason for the last two seasons while helping them clinch division titles in 2013 and 2014.

“I’ve said all along Cam is our franchise quarterback and we are absolutely thrilled that we got the extension done,” Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman said in a statement.

“It allows us to do the long-term planning that we need to do to make sure that he’s surrounded with players and that we can continue to build this team.”

Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Frank Pingue

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