By Jalon Hill
Cam Newton’s release from the Carolina Panthers could ultimately be viewed as a blessing in disguise as he signed a one-year, incentive laden deal with the New England Patriots.
The 2015 MVP received his walking papers from his former team after failing to garner any trade partners and remained unsigned after the free agency period had ended.
Despite the wait, Newton has finally signed with a team and this pairing will soon be beneficial to both sides. Here’s why Newton will have a comeback year with the Patriots :
Coming off a season where they were the number one defense in the league, Cam will have the luxury of being a game manager for Patriots instead of being the center focus.
The last time that the Panthers had a number one defense was in 2013. A season in which Newton put together one of his best career statistics and led his team to a NFC South championship and Divisional round of the playoffs. With Pro Bowl players like cornerback Stephon Gilmore and linebacker Dont’a Hightower leading the defensive unit, Newton can hopefully manage similar success, if not better.
Throughout his 9 year career, Cam Newton has never had a consistent offensive line. Despite having Pro Bowl lineman like Ryan Kalil, Trai Turner, Michael Oher, and Jordan Gross, the Panthers have had inconsistency on their offensive front.
New England provides Cam with the most consistent offensive lines in his career. Tom Brady was sacked just 21 times last year which tied for second-fewest in a 16-game season in the last 10 years.
This upgrade will be beneficial as many of Cam’s injuries have come from taking so many hits while in the pocket.
Just like Newton, many of New England’s offensive starters missed significant time due to injury. With many of these key pieces returning to the field this season, Newton will have just enough available weapons to his disposal on the field.
Although they may not be an upgrade from Christian McCaffery, New England has one of the deepest running back depth charts in the league with James White and Sony Michell to lead the bunch.This type of his depth added with Newton’s ability to scramble to make the Patriots’ rushing attack deadly.
The presence of veteran receivers like Julian Edelman and Mohammad Sanu would also benefit the newly signed quarterback.
To add icing to the cake, Newton will be paired with 6x Super Bowl winning and future hall of fame coach Bill Belichick.
The constant debate is “Did Belichick need Brady or did Brady need Belichick?”. No matter the answer to that question, Newton needs Belichick.
Outside of his days at Auburn under the leadership of then coach Urban Myer, Cam has never had a Hall of Fame coach.
Bill Belichick will not only look to use Newton’s strengths but try to improve his main weakness: Pocket presence.
This has been a major concern for the former NFL MVP and could be the deciding factor in how long he will last in the league.
“They gave up on me.” were the words of Newton after he was released from the Panthers. Cam will have a chance to prove the doubters wrong this upcoming season.
New England have never been a team to rebuild but instead reload. Will this dream pair lead to another SuperBowl appearance for both Newton and the Patriots?