Cam Newton is a game-changer when healthy, and he just changed the course of the Patriots’ 2020 season.
ESPN reported New England signed Newton to a one-year minimum deal. There is no way to sugarcoat the impact of this move. The Patriots just kept themselves relevant while Newton gets a chance to prove his doubters wrong.
New England’s quarterback room was unlikely to scare anyone. Not even the Dolphins and Jets; two divisional foes that have combined for two winning seasons since 2011.
Jarrett Stidham was drafted in the fourth round in 2019 and completed two of four passes last season. His only touchdown pass was a pick-six to Jets defensive back Jamal Adams. Brian Hoyer is an 11-year journeyman who best projects as a good backup with a 16-22 career record as a starter.
And then there’s Newton. A former MVP who led the Panthers to a 15-1 record and Super Bowl appearance in 2015. He has a career record of 68-55, and that’s while playing in the NFC South, which has been one of the strongest divisions in the past 10 seasons.
The biggest benefit for Newton will be teaming up with defensive mastermind Bill Belichick. The Patriots have finished in the top 10 in scoring defenses in 13 of the last 14 seasons. In comparison, the Panthers only had two top-10 defenses with Newton under center. They went a combined 27-5 in those two seasons.
The Newton-Patriots combination could be a cheat code, but there are two big question marks.
Newton’s health is one. Indications are that Newton is back healthy after having shoulder and foot surgery in 2019. He has posted workout videos after people began to question his arm strength, and he’s even received a vouch from one of the NFL’s top receivers.
The other question mark is Newton’s receiving targets. In Newton’s last six seasons as a starter, he only had one wide receiver top 1,000 yards. New England’s depth chart isn’t much better. Outside of Julian Edelman, no other wide receiver topped 400 yards.
You can bet that Belichick won’t just hand Newton the starting job, but it’s hard to see him losing this battle. Just when it looked like the Bills were closing in on taking over the AFC East, Belichick pulled another trick up his sleeve.
According to FoxBet.com, the Patriots Super Bowl odds went from 25-1 to 19-1. Newton’s chances of winning Comeback Player of the Year also jumped from 22-1 to 4-1. That is a big leap.
Tom Brady is gone, but the Newton-Belichick duo figures to be enough to keep the wheels rolling.
Netflix is created a six-part series that will detail Colin Kaepernick’s high school years.
The project has been in the makings for more than a year. It will be directed by Ava DuVernay, who has produced several award-winning films that highlight social injustices in America.
The film is titled Colin in Black & White and will detail his experience as a Black kid adopted into a white family.
Kaepernick was an all-state athlete in football, basketball and baseball at John H. Pitman High in Turlock, Ca. He also became more socially conscious during this time.