Twitter Slams Patriots’ Cam Newton for COVID-19 Protocol Misstep

Cam Newton Patriots

Getty Patriots QB Cam Newton walks off the field.

The New England Patriots‘ quarterback situation had an unexpected turn on Monday, August 23 when Cam Newton was forced to be away from the team for five days following a violation of the COVID-19 protocols.

The Patriots released a statement on the situation that led to Newton landing in quarantine for just under a week. The team referred to it as a “misunderstanding.”


Everything You Need to Know About Cam Newton’s 5-Day Ban After Violating COVID-19 Protocol

Per NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport, here is the statement from the Patriots.

On Saturday, Cam Newton traveled to a Club-approved medical appointment that required him to leave the New England area. He received daily Covid tests, which were all negative. Due to a misunderstanding about tests conducted away from NFL facilities, and as required by the NFL-NFLPA protocols, Cam will be subject to the five-day entry cadence process before returning to the facility. Cam will continue participating virtually in team activities and return to the club facility on Thursday, August 26.

NBC Sports Boston’s Tom E. Curran summed up the Newton event as followed in a combo tweet in which referred to as “a likely scenario:”

A likely scenario for how Cam Newton situation unfolded. With days off, he traveled. He understood he needed daily testing but not the bio-reference test. Upon return, he apprised folks here he was gone but tested elsewhere. Team checked to see if his testing spots were valid. Turned out they were not. And here we are.

This entire ordeal exposes a very important component in the Patriots roster dynamic, and that’s the impact of having a player–especially a key one on the team who isn’t vaccinated. Newton’s vaccination status had been discussed amidst some groups of the media, but not confirmed. The protocol he’s subject to while traveling is consistent with the process a non-vaccinated player has to follow. Thus, it makes his status pretty clear in this regard.

The timing of Newton’s absence isn’t ideal. Newton’s absence will cost him three practice days leading up to the team’s final preseason tilt on Sunday against the New York Giants.

In the meantime, rookie Mac Jones took all of the first-team reps at practice on Monday. In his first extended action against the defensive starters, Jones was inconsistent completing 12 of 24 passes against a ramped-up defense, per The Athletic’s Jeff Howe.

Here is a sample of some of the reactions to the Newton news.


Newton Slammed for Being Unvaccinated

The Tribune Legacy’s Ben Estes kept his thoughts short and sweet shaming Newton for being unvaccinated

Newton said his decision to be vaccinated or unvaccinated was too personal to share, but with these developments, it’s now clear. Many who opposed Newton starting for the Patriots from the beginning have used this as a new platform to proclaim his unfitness for the spot.

Others are reading Newton for not putting himself in a position to protect his job. Tallahassee.com’s Antwan Staley says “Cam would be best served to do whatever it takes to make sure he’s the starter each week.”

Chris Torello of Bay News 9 in Tampa, Florida talks about the “inconveniences for unvaccinated players,” lumping Newton in with that group, though the info is still unofficial.

He seems happy to see Newton being stuck with the five-day ban.

Newton now has a serious dilemma on his hands. Quite honestly, he cannot afford another absence from the team. Last year, a bout with COVID-19 effectively ruined his season.

This year, a five-day ban could open the door for his eventual replacement to speed up his process of taking the reins. Getting vaccinated may not completely protect him from COVID-19, but it would prevent him from falling victim to more technicalities associated with league protocol.

He’ll have at least five days to contemplate his decision.

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