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The Cam Newton Resurgence is Real
The Patriots have strung together back-to-back wins over the low New York Jets and the playoff-contending Baltimore Ravens in consecutive weeks. The victories have pushed the Patriots to a 4-5 record, and the win streak has the media and fans talking playoffs again.
The Patriots’ running game is by far the key to their offensive success. On defense, forcing turnovers has been a major barometer of excellence.
In addition to those core principles, the Patriots’ improved play can be directly tied to Newton’s resurgence. After starting the season strong in the first three weeks. Newton tested positive for COVID-19, missed the Week 4 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, and struggled to shake the effects of the coronavirus absence in his next 2.5 games.
It appears a light came on for him at halftime of the Buffalo Bills game, a contest the Patriots heartbreakingly lost on a Newton fumble in the fourth quarter. Still, apart from the turnover that clinched the loss for the Patriots, Newton’s numbers and efficiency took a noticeable spike.
If you take a look at the numbers since the second half of the Bills game through the wins over the Jets and Ravens, it’s clear he’s been playing well.
— Michael Giardi (@MikeGiardi) November 20, 2020
Newton Believes COVID-19 Absence Set Him Back
Earlier in the week, Newton met with the press virtually and he talked about the impact of having COVID-19, and how it set him back this season.
“Ever since coming back from corona, to be honest with you, I felt stagnant in my thought process,” Newton said Thursday. “No, it’s nothing to it. It’s just the fact that I wasn’t able to do anything for that stint while I was off and it showed. Coming back, pretty much dry and knowing that as this offense goes, it evolves. When I did come back, I just felt behind. The production here of late is nothing to blame more or less than me just taking ownership and responsibility that I just have to be better.”
If you track the uptick in his performance, it seems to jibe with what he’s saying
Is a More Focused Passing Attack on the Way?
The Patriots are at their best when they run the ball. Their opponents know that, and you can bet teams will begin to throw everything they have at New England’s offensive line to thwart this approach.
The play-action pass has become a big part of the aerial attack but is it time for the Patriots to throw in another wrinkle to keep defenses honest? The Patriots don’t want to get too cute with their play-calling, but it’s becoming clear, Newton has the ability to make teams pay with his arm, especially if defenses start to sit on the run game.
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