Veteran quarterback Cam Newton has hit the free-agent market and, if he is healthy, the New England Patriots should strongly consider signing the veteran.
The New England Patriots are entering somewhat of uncharted territory in the 2020 season. For the first time in 20 years, the Patriots are on the search for a new quarterback since they drafted future Hall-of-Fame quarterback Tom Brady in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft.
At the start of the new league year, Brady left the only team he’s ever played for in order to sign a two-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Brady leaving ends a dynasty of six Super Bowl championships and unprecedented success. The Patriots are now faced with the decision of who they would like to take over for the offense during the 2020 campaign and in the future.
Right now, New England has two decent options to choose from on the roster in 24-year-old Jarrett Stidham or newly-signed veteran Brian Hoyer. Stidham appeared in a total of three games during his rookie campaign in 2019, making only four passing attempts as Brady’s backup.
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Hoyer, who spent last season with the Indianapolis Colts and is set to turn 35 in October, is a familiar face to Patriots fans with the veteran playing in New England two different times in his career (2009-11 and 2017-18). But there might be another option at quarterback on the market that the Patriots could lean towards. And if he’s healthy, it would be worth it.
Shortly after Brady made his decision to head to Tampa Bay, the Carolina Panthers also made a move at quarterback in signing free agent Teddy Bridgewater and parting ways with veteran quarterback Cam Newton.
Newton, a former NFL MVP who is 30 years old, has dealt with some injury issues as of late in Carolina, which has been and will continue to be the biggest question mark surrounding the mobile quarterback. Last season, Newton only appeared in two games for the Panthers while dealing with a season-ending foot injury and subsequent surgery. In those two games, however, Newton tallied 572 yards passing with one interception, completing 56.2 percent of his passes.
Newton is a dangerous quarterback both in the passing game and with his legs in the running game, which is a valuable asset for a quarterback to have for teams in the modern layout of teams in the NFL. If he is healthy, there is no doubt that Newton would be better options under center for the Patriots compared to their current options of Stidham and Hoyer. The “if” portion of that sentence is the biggest key, however.
An aspect that makes Newton to New England an intriguing thought is that it would offer the Patriots with another option in the running game that they really haven’t had in years past at the position.
Another thing interesting about the potential of this addition is that New England head coach Bill Belichick has said in the past that he is a fan of Newton and views him as one of the top quarterbacks in the league.
In 2017, Belichick told the media prior to the Patriots facing the Panthers that Newton is near the top of the list of quarterbacks who are a complete package and are able to throw, run and are also hard to tackle and contain on offense.
If Newton is indeed fully healthy, is ready to go and if there is a way New England can guarantee that he will remain healthy in 2020 and beyond, the Patriots should at least consider the option of taking a flyer on the veteran quarterback moving forward.