Patriots Analyst Apologizes to Cam Newton For ‘Insensitive’ Comments


Former New England Patriots quarterback and current analyst Scott Zolak found himself in hot water after he made comments about Cam Newton and “rap music” last week.

After going radio silent for a few days, Zolak addressed the situation and said that he apologized to Newton face-to-face for comments he referred to as “insensitve.”

Zolak: “He Handled it Perfect”

Per NESN’s Zack Cox, here is what Zolak told WEEI’s Mark Bertrand:

Newton’s “perfect” response shouldn’t come as a surprise. The 2015 NFL MVP has, if nothing else, handled criticism and negative remarks from the media with grace and poise.

This particular comment coming from a member of the media and a former Patriots player was particularly unnerving, but again, Newton seemed to handle it in stride.

In case you missed it, Zolak said he felt Newton was “distracted” by the rap music, and that the Patriots should “turn it off.” He referenced Newton dancing after throws and drew the direct comparison to rookie Mac Jones who has a less jovial demeanor.

While he is fighting to keep his job, how did Newton manage to keep his cool after such a cheap shot?

Perhaps Newton already knows the answer to the question: who are the Patriots’ starting at quarterback in Week 1 vs. the Miami Dolphins? He did post something on Instagram that had people buzzing about “QB1.”

Also, Newton has continued to take starter-level reps in practice and in the three preseason games. Bill Belichick said he hadn’t made a decision on who would start in Week 1, but everything he’s done seems to point to Newton.

If the observations of legendary coach Dante Scarnecchia count for anything, we should expect a much-improved version of Newton during the regular season.

Scar Weighs in On Newton’s Progress

Everyone knows the Patriots need improved play on offense, and that starts with the quarterback.

ESPN’s Mike Reiss  spoke with former Patriots assistant Dante Scarnecchia who talked about Newton and rookie Mac Jones’ progress:

I watched the quarterbacks to see what they look like after all the things that have been said. I was really, really impressed by both the quarterbacks. It looks like Cam [Newton] has better command of the offense, and the ball seems to be coming out a little bit faster. And I think what they’re doing with Mac Jones is everything. They’re lining up in stuff that has gone beyond Basics 101 and into other things — the empty backfield sets, the protection adjustments, all the stuff that goes with it. And he seems to be doing very well with it all.

You’d be a fool not to think that Jones will be the Patriots’ starting quarterback at some point. However, for now, Newton is doing a solid job of holding the rookie at bay–even while dancing with “rap music” blaring during practice.

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