Due to Andy Dalton signing with the Dallas Cowboys, Cam Newton is now the top quarterback available in free agency.
Newton was released by the Carolina Panthers in March. Now, more than six weeks after the start of free agency, he is still a free agent. As Rodger Sherman of The Ringer puts it, while Newton was poised to take over the NFL when he entered the league, it seems that he is now unwanted.
Could Newton’s career in the NFL be over? It should not be, because he is a good quarterback and can still get the job done. In 2015, he helped the Panthers become the 18th team in NFL history to score 500 points in a season. That season, Newton led the Panthers to the Super Bowl.
Newton has also been the NFL MVP. However, in the last two seasons, he has had to deal with injuries. Last year, he played in just two games and struggled before having season-ending foot surgery.
Which teams could possibly want Newton? The Jacksonville Jaguars are the betting favorites to get Newton at +250 with the New England Patriots second at +300. The Washington Redskins are third at +350. The top five is rounded out by the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks.
The Jaguars have Gardner Minshew as their quarterback while the Patriots have Jarrett Stidham. The problem is that Newton doesn’t want to be a backup quarterback, according to Joe Person of The Athletic.
Had this discussion w/ someone last week: No way Cam Newton signs w/ anyone as a backup. Continue to rehab and wait for travel restrictions to lift so teams can examine him. Worst case: He waits until a starter gets hurt.
— Joe Person (@josephperson) May 3, 2020
If Newton does go to the Jaguars or the Patriots, he will be a backup, which he doesn’t want. The Jaguars see Minshew as their future, so there’s no chance that Newton goes to the Jaguars.
The Patriots seem to be a likely landing spot for Newton because even though they have Stidham, Newton could take the starting job over from Stidham if he struggles.
The next logical landing spot for Newton would be Washington. Former Panthers head coach Ron Rivera is with Washington, so he’s familiar with Newton. Washington does already have a quarterback in Dwayne Haskins, though, so Newton likely wouldn’t land a starting job right away in the nation’s capital.
The Patriots are the best choice for Newton. If he doesn’t go to the Patriots or Washington and he does refuse to settle for a backup role, his NFL career might just be over.