Darnold was brought in to resurrect his career, but it simply did not happen.
That left the Panthers in a bit of quarterback purgatory with a 4-5 record heading into Week 10.
The organization decided to go back to an old friend by signing Cam Newton to a one-year deal Thursday.
Once the financial information came out, it became clear Newton may be in Carolina for more than just 2021.
Legit and real starter money. https://t.co/PBFT85hLdZ
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 11, 2021
The Panthers are bringing Newton in midway through the year and are paying him $4.5 million guaranteed.
That is serious cash and means he is going to start right away, potentially as early as Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.
Newton Set To Reclaim His Throne
The $4.5 million guaranteed shows the faith the Panthers have in Newton.
It is just tough to believe the team waited so long when it was clear Darnold was not improving.
Cam Newton is running it back with the Panthers ⏪ @brgridiron
Old school Cam was fun
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) November 11, 2021
Yet the tricky situation there is the fact the Panthers did pick up Darnold’s fifth-year option for 2022.
So barring a trade, he is coming back next season.
He is also set to return in a few weeks from a shoulder fracture.
Newton’s money makes it clear, however, that the veteran is the starter as the Panthers chase the postseason.
This is an exciting homecoming for Newton and the Panthers.
He returns home after a stint with the New England Patriots and waiting to sign with a team ended up paying off.
It is unlikely he would get such guaranteed money elsewhere in the NFL.
The fans should support this decision because at this point anything is better than Darnold going out there and regressing even further.