The New England Patriots took a crushing defeat on Sunday. The 22-12 loss to the Miami Dolphins killed what was left of their playoff hopes. During his postgame interviews all season, Cam Newton has been optimistic and very supportive of his teammates. On Sunday, he was mostly the same, but he did show a bit of a crack with one particular comment.
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Cam Newton: ‘We’ve Still Got Guys That Just Don’t Get It’
After the game, Newton was clearly frustrated but did a good job soldiering through a tough postgame interview after the disappointing divisional loss. It’s tough to answer questions about why you failed when those inquiries are coming from people whose job is to get you to say something interesting.
Usually, Newton does as good of a job as anyone delivering honest, well-thought-out responses that don’t throw anyone under the bus. He generally remains positive and accountable.
On Sunday after the loss to the Dolphins, the embattled quarterback might have given about as much of a negative answer as he has offered all year. When asked by NFL Network’s Mike Giardi about not being able to get New England to the playoffs, Newton talked about coming up just short and the frustration in that reality.
“We’ve still got guys that are new to this system,” Newton also said. “We’ve still got guys that are young. We’ve still got guys that just don’t get it and we’ve still got guys that are battling their tails off.”
Here is a look at the entire interview:
The part of that quote that sticks out is, “We’ve still got guys that just don’t get it.”
You could argue it’s a comment that Newton should have kept to himself, or perhaps it was taken out of context. In any case, it’s going to cause a bit of a ripple.
Who Is Newton Referring to?
It’s unlikely Newton is talking about anyone on the defensive side of the ball.
It’s rare for a quarterback to take aim at someone on defense. So despite the fact the Patriots gave up an eye-popping 250 yards on the ground to a depleted Dolphins running back group led by Salvon Ahmed’s 122-yard showing, Newton probably wasn’t pointing a finger at the defense.
His running game has been stellar most of the season, so it would have to be something related to the left tackle, wide receivers or young tight ends. Jermaine Eluemunor struggled mightily over the last two games with some head-scratching missed blocks that led to sacks and pressures. After battling injuries this week, he didn’t start, leaving promising rookie Justin Herron at left tackle in his place on Sunday.
Rookie tight ends Dalton Keene and Devin Asiasi have failed to remain healthy and to make an impact on the field. However, the player this comment would appear to be directed toward is second-year wideout N’Keal Harry.
This is purely my take based on Harry’s play on the field and a recent issue that had the young receiver seeking to clear the air with Newton on a misunderstanding.
Harry is a 2019 first-round pick who has failed to make a mark on the field. Despite some recent signs of success in the two previous games, Harry managed just one reception for 12 yards on Sunday and failed to bring in his other target on an imperfectly-thrown, but very catchable ball in the second half.
If there is anyone on the roster that it would appear Newton is referring to, it is Harry. That could be an incorrect conclusion to draw, but the comment leaves us free to speculate.