The New England Patriots were able to offer Cam Newton something most teams around the NFL couldn’t: a legitimate chance at winning a starting quarterback job.
So as long as Newton is 100 percent healthy, there’s no reason to believe he won’t earn the gig in New England. Jarrett Stidham has yet to make an NFL start and Brian Hoyer is, well, Brian Hoyer.
But perhaps being on the sideline Week 1 rather than under center is in Newton’s best interest. NFL cornerback-turned-analyst Dominique Foxworth explained why Thursday morning on ESPN’s “Get Up.”
“Hearing everyone talk about how difficult this is and understanding the unique circumstances, I know that he’s probably going to show up on Day 1 and run with the threes behind Hoyer and Stidham,” Foxworth said. “But I think there’s a distinct possibility he could not start in Week 1, and that might be what’s best for Cam Newton in that situation. If you think about it, assuming Jarrett Stidham struggles a little bit, it’s nice to come in and replace Jarrett Stidham — it’s much nicer to do that than come in and replace Tom Brady, which is what he’ll be doing coming it. So I think that there’s a possibility given the uniqueness of this offseason that maybe he doesn’t start Day 1 and he comes in a couple weeks in and replaces Jarrett Stidham if the Patriots struggle offensively.”
The pressure on Newton certainly would be diminished if he were to take the reins in relief as opposed to starting from the get-go. But judging from the 2015 NFL MVP’s recent social media activity, as well as his reported mindset entering the 2020 season, he’s eager to fully embrace the challenge that awaits.