A lot has been said about the Bill Belichick and “The Patriot Way” in New England.
Well, quarterback Cam Newton got to see what that meant up close and personal for the first time this season. The 31-year-old signal-caller, of course, was the 2020 starting quarterback of the Patriots, who finished 7-9 in the organization’s first year without Tom Brady.
Newton was asked how he would define “The Patriot Way” during Monday’s episode of “I AM ATHLETE” podcast with former NFL players Brandon Marshall, Fred Taylor and Chad Ochocinco.
“‘The Patriot Way,’ like I said, it’s mental stamina,” Newton said. “It’s hard to explain, but that’s the word, that’s the definition. You have to have as much energy as you have the first day of pads as the last day of pads. And you’re going to practice. You got to be mentally tough. You have to be physically tough. And that’s what it is. You can’t blink.”
Was it a challenge for Newton to grasp that concept after nine years with one organization — the Carolina Panthers?
“No. No. It wasn’t,” Newton said. “It wasn’t nothing that I didn’t have to get used to. I’ve been working. My work ethic was always high. It’s still high.”
That work ethic was something New England teammates and coaches relentlessly praised about Newton. But the fact is Newton still had a below-average year in a system in which he was surrounded by below-average talent.
Newton completed 65.8% of his passes for 2,657 yards with eight touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He also carried the ball 137 times for 592 yards with 12 touchdowns.
The Patriots, as you may know, don’t seem to have closed the door on Newton returning for the 2021 season. He is a free agent while the Patriots only have Jarrett Stidham and practice-squader Jake Dolegala under contract.
Newton expressed how he would be more than open to returning to New England. It would give him another shot at “The Patriot Way.”