It appears Cam Newton may have played his last game as a member of the Carolina Panthers. The team is reportedly nearing a deal with Teddy Bridgewater to be the next QB on the franchise.
Carolina is allowing Newton and his representatives to find a new home, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
“One of the distinct pleasures of my career was selecting Cam with the first pick in the 2011 draft,” general manager Marty Hurney said in a statement. “Every year difficult decisions are made and they are never easy. We have been working with Cam and his agent to find the best fit for him moving forward and he will always be a Carolina Panther in our hearts.”
Newton took to social media to make it clear that he never asked for a trade. “You forced me into this,” the QB said.
Newton struggled with injuries over the past two seasons. Foot surgery limited him to just two games played in 2019 and he wasn’t sharp in those contests, compiling zero touchdowns and one interception while completing 56.2 percent of his passes.
It’s been a while since Newton has been in MVP form. He won the award back in 2015 during a 15-1 run that saw the team make the Super Bowl. He had some success in 2017, leading the team to the playoffs, though his 59.1% completion percentage that season left much to be desired.
Newton, who is 31-years-old, has just one season on his deal and will make roughly $19 million—a reasonable amount for a potential starting quarterback. Teams without established or potential long-term starters should have interest Newton.
Let’s take a look at some potential landing spots:
3. Los Angeles Chargers
The Chargers are making a push for Tom Brady, though they would be a good fit for nearly every quarterback on the market. They have a solid defense and top-notch weapons in Keenan Allen, Hunter Henry, and Austin Ekeler. If Newton lands in Los Angeles, he’d be in a great spot to resurrect his career.
2. Washington Redskins
The Redskins aren’t thrilled with how Dwayne Haskins performed during his rookie season. The raw stats can tell you that the season was meh. Seven touchdowns with seven interceptions; 56.8 completion percentage; 6.7 Yards/attempt. Even the most optimistic forecast couldn’t look at his season and see a ceiling any higher than this generation’s Jay Cutler.
Newton would give the franchise a solid veteran to push the Ohio State product and potentially allow them to transition to a new signal-caller.
1. Chicago Bears
The Bears are looking for someone to come in and push incumbent starter Mitchell Trubisky. The former No. 2 overall pick has not impressed since coming to Chicago and Newton may be able to help this team reach its potential. The Bears’ defense is among the best in the league and if they can get competent QB play, the sky is the limit.
From a scheme standpoint, Chicago might be the best fit among teams looking for a veteran QB. Coach Matt Nagy uses a ton of zone reads and designed play runs. While Newton isn’t the athlete he once was and his age may require him to use less of his legs, transitioning from Trubisky to Newton should be an easy task if the Bears choose to do so.
READ NEXT: Top Trade Destinations for LT Trent Williams