5 Reasons Cam Newton Should Be The Patriots’ Starter

Getty Cam Newton

The New England Patriots haven’t had a quarterback controversy in more than 20 years. If you listen to the words Bill Belichick has actually said, and not the ones some have twisted, then they still don’t have one.

Belichick has said on more than one occasion, Cam Newton is his starter. However, Mac Jones fever is spreading. Thanks to a strong performance in his preseason debut, it seems even more people are calling for Belichick to accelerate Jones’ promotion to QB1.

While it is understandable for Patriots fans to want their inevitable future to start right now, it is in the best interest of the team and Jones if he takes the reins in 2022. That means, Newton should be the starter throughout 2021, barring injury or just horrible play that forces Belichick to make the move.

Here are 5 reasons Newton is the right choice.

1 – There is Every Reason to Believe Newton Will Be More Comfortable in the Patriots’ Offense in 2021

Last season wasn’t a great one for Newton or the Patriots.

New England missed the postseason for the first time since 2008. Newton completed 65.8% of his passes, but he only threw for 2,657 yards and 8 TDs. He ran for 12 more scores, but he was dogged by 10 interceptions and 6 fumbles.

As rough as some spots were in 2020 for Newton, there is room for optimism. Newton caught COVID last season and because he signed with the Patriots in late June, he didn’t have time to prepare properly.

Newton was hurt in 2019 while still with the Carolina Panthers, so he’d been without two proper offseasons.

Being healthy for the first time in a while, Newton participated in the Patriots’ entire offseason program, and judging by what his coaches are saying, he appears to be grasping things far more than he did in 2020.

In the video below, Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels talked about Newton’s “Year 2” leap. McDaniels said: “He knows much more about what we’re doing this year.”

Josh McDaniels on Cam Newton's Year 2 Leap with the Patriots (Press Conference)Patriots OC Josh McDaniels met with the media on 8/4; he discussed Cam Newton's second year, how Mac Jones & the rest of the rookies are progressing in Camp so far and more. Subscribe to the New England Patriots YouTube channel: bit.ly/2IOD2e9 For More Patriots NFL Action: bit.ly/2Y1e9zz #NewEnglandPatriots #Patriots #NFL For more Patriots content:…2021-08-04T17:42:05Z

Newton completed 4 of 7 pass attempts for 49 yards in Thursday’s 22-13 preseason win over the Washington Football Team. While Newton didn’t go down the field with his passes, it is hard to imagine he won’t bring more production to the position in 2021.

2- Newton Has Better Weapons at His Disposal

One thing that is often dismissed when Newton is being critiqued is the ineffectiveness of his passing weapons in 2020. Jakobi Meyers worked hard to become the Patriots’ No. 1 receiver in 2020, but with all due respect, if he is the most talented receiver on a roster, that offense is in trouble.

That was the hand Newton was dealt, Still, as many point out, he produced more favorable numbers than even Tom Brady in some passing categories (65.8% over 60.8 completion percentage) with a similar cast in 2019.

That has to be placed in the proper perspective because of the kinds of throws the 2 quarterbacks were making, but Newton wasn’t as ineffective in 2020 as many would lead you to believe.

In 2021, thanks to the additions of Nelson Agholor, Kendrick Bourne, Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith, Newton will have more weapons.

3 – Newton’s Veteran Leadership

When comparing Newton to Jones, from a leadership perspective, there is no competition. Newton has been in the NFL since 2011. In 2011, Jones was 13 years old.

Newton’s leadership is something that has been lauded by Bill Belichick and the former’s teammates. Meyers talked about Newton’s leadership in 2020:

Growing up as a quarterback, seeing Cam, a guy who is able to come in and be himself and go out there and win games — even when people hated on him and talked bad about him, he still came in every day and performed. It just showed who he was, his personality.

Belichick added this back in October 2020 while speaking with the media. He said:

Cam does a great job of connecting with everybody. Whether it’s his teammates, his receivers, guys on defense, other people in the organization. I think the captain voting, not that that’s the ultimate final determination of leadership, but I think the fact that he’s been here a pretty short amount of time and earned that type of respect and support from his teammates is pretty impressive. I think it’s across the board. It’s the offensive line, it’s the receivers, it’s all the offensive players and coaches, and it extends into other areas as well like special teams and defense and other people in the organization. I think that we’ve all seen that and it’s impressive.

It would be impossible for a rookie to match this sort of leadership, and because we’re talking about the quarterback position, this is important.

4 – Demoting Newton Will Make the Patriots’ QB Depth Chart Shallow

From a pure numbers and talent standpoint, demoting Newton could drastically weaken the Patriots’ roster. If Newton isn’t the starter, it is very likely he could ask to be released to pursue a job with another team.

It is difficult to imagine him taking a backup role at this point in his career. A retirement seems more likely than standing on the sideline holding a clipboard.

If that happens, the Patriots would be left with Jones, Brian Hoyer and Jarrett Stidham. Without question, that would be the worst quarterback room in the NFL. If Jones were to falter some time during the season, or get hurt, New England would be in dire straits.

As long as Newton is performing well enough to keep the team competitive and winning games, having him ahead of Jones and Hoyer is ideal.

5 – Mac Jones Will Be a Better QB in 2022, If He Can Watch and Learn in 2021

Jones is the future. Anyone who isn’t recognizing that is kidding themselves.

That said, the Patriots would be making a mistake to rush him. Jones is wise beyond his years and when compared to other young quarterbacks. However, that doesn’t mean New England would be setting him up for success by throwing him to the proverbial wolves as a rookie.

As sharp as he is for an inexperienced quarterback, the additional knowledge and orchestrated live reps he takes in as a rookie, the better he’ll be in Year 2 when the team is formally turned over to him.

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