The New England Patriots haven’t had the kind of season they hoped for, and the same could be said for Cam Newton individually. Still, the QB was owed the respect he was shown by the premier Patriots beat writer.
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Mike Reiss Acknowledges Cam Newton’s Professionalism and Availability
It’s the media’s job to critique the performance of athletes. Sometimes those critiques aren’t positive, but it should never be personal.
ESPN’s Mike Reiss does a great job in this area. His analysis and reporting are always rooted in class and accuracy.
During the Christmas Eve press meeting with Newton, Reiss took the time to thank Newton for his professionalism, accessibility, and insightful answers over the course of what proved to be a tough season in more ways than one.
Take a look at the entire session in the video below.
In a time when athletes like the Brooklyn Nets are referring to the media as pawns and seemingly doing everything they can to circumvent the very relationship that helps to build their brands, it’s refreshing to see Newton so open when he actually has more haters than the talented, but severely immature ex-Boston Celtics star.
Newton Saved the Season From a Media Coverage Standpoint
Let’s be honest.
From a media coverage standpoint, when Tom Brady bolted for Tampa Bay, the Patriots’ biggest star and most interesting personality was going to be Bill Belichick. As brilliant as Belichick has been as a coach, he’s not the guy you want if you’re looking for quotes and one-liners you can analyze through the week.
The team was headed for a mediocre season, which thanks to COVID-19, Newton was unable to alter. Perhaps even worse than the playoff-less season Patriots fans have endured and would have undoubtedly still had without Newton, things were going to be pretty boring at Gillette Stadium.
Newton is one of the most polarizing athletes in sports. His presence alone made the Patriots a fun team to cover, and as Reiss mentioned, Newton’s openness was refreshing. It made him the best interview in Boston sports, and perhaps all of athletics.
The wins and losses matter, but at the end of the day, sports fans and the media also enjoy following compelling stories. Newton helped to provide that all season, and he did it with a smile most times.
The Book May Not Be Closed for Newton in New England
Many of Newton’s critics are hoping to see him elsewhere, but it seems clear from some of the answers he gave on Thursday, he’d like to return. The Patriots will almost certainly be drafting in the middle of the first round. That’s going to be too late to take one of the elite quarterbacks in the draft. Because of that, it seems more likely the Patriots might lean toward another veteran.
Based on familiarity and the belief that Newton will be much better in his second year in the offense, there is a train of thought that would support him returning. That doesn’t mean the team doesn’t draft a quarterback later in the middle rounds, but I wouldn’t completely rule out Newton’s return.
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