The New England Patriots are reportedly confident in second-year quarterback Jarrett Stidham heading into the 2020 season, but the AFC East franchise continues to be linked to free agent Cam Newton.
Newton, the former No. 1 overall NFL Draft pick, was released by the Carolina Panthers in March. He’s yet to sign with a new team.
The Patriots are reportedly confident in Stidham’s ability to replace Tom Brady, though Newton remains an intriguing option.
Former New England Patriots veteran Willie McGinest believes Newton could be a strong fit under Bill Belichick. He said that the organization has always viewed Newton on good terms.
“I think Bill Belichick has handled so many different personalities that they would co-exist,” McGinest said on “Speak For Yourself” on Thursday. “It would be a great working relationship. I’m just telling you guys right now, there is a lot of respect from the Patriots organization when it comes to Cam Newton because they have played several times and Cam Newton has showed out and played at a high level every single time they’ve played. I haven’t checked the numbers, but I think Cam Newton may have a winning record against the Patriots.”
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McGinest, who played in New England from 1994-2005, thinks the Patriots would be a great fit for Newton at this stage of his career.
“When you look at Cam Newton, and the issues he’s had, it’s never been off the field,” McGinest said. “It’s never really been on the field. It’s been when he hasn’t performed at a certain level and he’s frustrated or upset with himself, or he didn’t win football games. It was usually at the press conference, at the podium. We all know the quarterback position is at the podium and speaks to the media every single day.
“The one advice I would give to Cam is, look, you’re polarizing, you’re a superstar, you’re an MVP. You led your team to the Super Bowl. You have to handle adversity the same way you handle winning football games. It’s the toughest thing for an athlete to do. He understands that. Nobody likes losing. … But when you address the media, you have to do it in a professional manner and you have to address things the same way you do as if you won the game. You don’t have to like it, but you got to do it.”
Will the Patriots end up being the team that takes a chance on Newton?