The New England Patriots pulled off a move out of left field.
It was a shocking development considering that he and Mac Jones were the top contenders for the starting quarterback role.
— NFL (@NFL) August 31, 2021
Eventually, head coach Bill Belichick went with the player who showed better command of the offense during the preseason.
Inexperience didn’t become a factor in the Patriots selecting Jones over Newton.
But should that happen, there was a common belief that the former Auburn standout would stay as a backup.
That would have been the first time in his career that he would be coming off the sidelines.
Instead, the Newton experiment in New England is over, and he does not have a team for the first time in 10 seasons.
Numbers Don’t Lie
Newton had a decent campaign for the Patriots last season.
He threw for 2,657 yards and eight touchdowns and completed 65.8 percent of his passes.
He also added 12 touchdowns and 592 yards on the ground.
But that was last year when the Patriots finished with a 7-9 record.
That were not enough for him to keep his role, especially with Jones’ emergence.
Patriots: Cam, we're releasing you
Cam Newton: pic.twitter.com/X7fHA1ozJm
— FanDuel Sportsbook (@FDSportsbook) August 31, 2021
In their preseason game against the Washington Football Team, Newton made four passes for 47 yards.
In contrast, Jones completed 13 passes for 87 yards.
Newton did throw a touchdown pass against the Philadelphia Eagles a week later.
But Jones still had the better stat line with 13 completions for 146 yards.
It was not even close during their final preseason game on the road versus the New York Giants.
Newton had 10 passing yards on two completions and a pick, while Jones had 156 yards and a touchdown.
While the preseason isn’t indicative of how a player or a team will fare in the regular season, these numbers paint a narrative that the younger quarterback is ready.
Is There A Market For Newton?
Reality bites hard for Newton at this point.
He’s not the Newton of old anymore but an old Newton.
Old in a sense that what made him a special quarterback years ago is now a regular flavor in today’s NFL.
Likewise, is there a starting quarterback that he can realistically unseat?
With the season just less than two weeks away, teams will be sticking to who they have.
ITS MAC TIME pic.twitter.com/U6OF0BnoAH
— Boston Connor (@BostonConnr) August 31, 2021
It’s too late to disrupt their gameplan by bringing Newton into the fold.
However, at best, there might be a team that might want to bring him in as a backup.
After all, it’s easy to absorb him on a bargain.
Sadly, the quarterback market is drying up for Newton because he is a shell of the explosive player he once was.
Some teams could give it a shot, though.
The Indianapolis Colts can bring him in if Carson Wentz will miss an extended period of time due to being in the COVID-19/Reserve list.
The Dallas Cowboys are also an interesting option after they’ve released Ben DiNucci.
A reunion with Ron Rivera in Washington may also happen.
But perhaps being like a Taysom Hill can be his chance to find an NFL team.
He can be that gadget player who can do multiple things on the field.
That’s an irresistible option, if only he can rediscover the guy that the league feared during the last decade.