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ESPN Analyst Gives Letter Grade To Patriots Signing Cam Newton

Cam Newton warms up before a game against the Patriots.

FOXBOROUGH, MA - AUGUST 22: Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers warms up prior to the start of a preseason game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on August 22, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Kathryn Riley/Getty Images)

Two days ago, the Patriots had arguably the worst QBs room in the AFC East. Today, they have arguably the best thanks to the signing of Cam Newton.

Obviously we won't know how good the one-year, $7.5 million signing works out for the Patriots until Newton steps onto the field. But for now, the early grades are in - and by the looks of things, they favor New England.

On Monday, ESPN analyst Bill Barnwell gave his letter grade to the Patriots signing the 2015 NFL MVP. Barnwell gave New England an A-minus grade for the move, pointing to the low-risk, high-reward nature of the deal.

"This is an obviously smart move for the Patriots, even if it doesn't work out," Barnwell concluded. "Merely having Newton on their roster when he could have served as a high-upside backup for such rivals as the Bills, Ravens, Steelers, Chiefs and Tennessee Titans would have been worth what the Patriots are paying him. For the Patriots to add a starter with Newton's upside this late in the process is almost a cliché. This has a strong case to become the best free-agent signing of the offseason."

The risk obviously comes in the form of the foot injury that cost Newton 14 games in 2019. But by the looks of things, he's recovered fully from the injury.

Whether or not Newton's recovery includes a return to his Pro Bowl form is another story though.

But if he is, the Patriots' 11-straight AFC East titles could extend to 12.