Ex-Bill Belichick Assistant Says the Patriots ‘Got Lucky’ in 2020

Getty Cam Newton, Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels

There are still a number of people who insist the New England Patriots shouldn’t have gotten rid of Tom Brady, and ex-Bill Belichick assistant Eric Mangini is one of them. However, he believes the Patriots got lucky without The G.O.A.T.

How did they get lucky? Well, Mangini, who was one of many who went on record doubting the marriage between Cam Newton, Belichick and the Patriots would work out, says New England has gotten lucky with the former NFL MVP.

He gave the coaches credit for what they’ve been able to do with Newton, but never once gave the player any love for his performance, preparation, leadership and football I.Q.

Take a listen to the segment that appeared on First Things First:

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This is a far cry from the stuff Mangini was saying about Newton and the Patriots a few months ago.

Mangini Once Spoke Near Doom on the Concept of Newton in New England

Back in July, Mangini said there is an absolute chance Newton wouldn’t start in Week 1. In fact, he went as far as to say there was a chance Newton wouldn’t even be on the roster. In the interview below, Mangini reiterated Newton may not mix with the Patriot Way. He says, “it’s not for everyone.”

Mangini offered, “if Newton was the same guy, why isn’t he in Carolina? Why isn’t he in Washington with his former offensive coordinator and head coach?”

At the time, Mangini wasn’t the only person saying these kinds of things, but after Newton has shined in two games, and nearly engineered a fantastic comeback against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 2, it’s much harder to find people taking shots at the Newton signing at this point.

Week 1-2 and Looking Ahead to Week 3

Through two games, Newton has completed 71.4 percent of his passes. He’s thrown for 552 yards, TD and an INT. His mobility has really been a major plus for a Patriots offense that has never had such a weapon.

Newton is leading the league in rushing touchdowns, and has already run for 122 yards on 22 carries. According to Pro Football Focus, Newton has been the fifth-best quarterback in the NFL. That’s not too bad for a guy who Mangini wondered if he was even capable of beating out Jarrett Stidham and/or Brian Hoyer in an abbreviated training camp.

In Week 3, Newton and the Patriots will take on the Las Vegas Raiders. The Raiders come in 2-0 and riding high after a huge upset win over the New Orleans Saints on Monday night. The Raiders have a high-powered offense, but their pass defense ranks 29th in the NFL. This might present yet another opportunity for Newton and the Patriots offense to shine.

Don’t be shocked if Newton’s numbers look even better after Week 3 than they have through two weeks.

I guess the Patriots just keep getting luckier by the week.

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