The manner in which the New England Patriots announced their signing of Cam Newton was very un-Patriot-like.
New England on Wednesday made the move official by releasing a spiffy, actually exciting hype video. Normally, the Patriots announce free agent signings with a press release and little more, if anything at all. Consequently, many watched the video and immediately interpreted it as evidence that Newton, not sophomore Jarrett Stidham, will be the Patriots’ starting quarterback in Week 1.
Well, if pumping up a star player guarantees a spot on the field, then Bill Belichick apparently missed the memo.
Boston Sports Journal’s Greg Bedard on Friday published a piece in which he explained why there very much will be a quarterback competition during training camp — if and when training camp even takes place.
Check out this excerpt:
Do the Patriots believe that if Newton stays healthy in camp (whenever that is), that he’s the odds-on favorite to be the starter?
Yes. But if you think that’s a given since he’s needed rotator cuff surgery after his last two seasons, you’re crazy. He could indeed have a chronic shoulder problem that needs monitoring and could cut into his camp reps.
But if you think, before Newton has done one single thing as a Patriot, that he’s locked up the starting quarterback position, then that would mean completely ignoring the previous 20 years of Belichick’s tenure with the Patriots.
Or, as one Patriots source put it:
“You think Bill gives a s–t about any of that?” the source asked. “I’m kind of disappointed you’d even ask.”
Obviously, Newton should be the starter. However, we still are talking about the Patriots and Bill Belichick, who couldn’t care less about star power and prior accomplishments.