A number of high-profile quarterbacks could be on the move this offseason. That list includes Carolina Panthers star Cam Newton, the 2015 NFL MVP.
Injuries have been a major issue for Newton over the last two years. He missed two games in 2018, and then nearly the entire season last fall. Newton played in just two games during the 2019 season, throwing for 572 yards without a touchdown, and one interception. He clearly didn’t look right in those outings.
Kyle Allen took over for Newton after the injury, and had some promising performances early in the year. He was benched in Week 16 against the Indianapolis Colts, in favor of West Virginia product Will Grier. Neither player ultimately looked like the eventual replacement for Newton. The team remains unsure of what it wants to do.
The franchise has undergone a significant overhaul over the last few years. General manager Marty Hurney took over the front office in 2017, and businessman David Tepper bought the Carolina Panthers in May 2018, taking over for team founder Jerry Richardson. After the disappointing 2019 season, the team fired popular head coach Ron Rivera, replacing him with Baylor’s Matt Rhule. Everyone involved has been pretty hushed about Newton’s future with the franchise. Tepper says it all comes down to his health.
Dave Tepper asked about Cam Newton situation following today’s community event: “I’ve said again and again, it’s a question of how healthy he is. That’s the No. 1 overwhelming thing. Everything comes from that.”
— Max Henson (@PanthersMax) February 11, 2020
A change at quarterback, given uncertainty surrounding Cam Newton’s health, would be the logical next step as the Panthers look to rebuild. With the No. 7 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the team could target a quarterback like Justin Herbert, who has been on the rise since his strong Senior Bowl Week performance.
Newton has been the team’s franchise quarterback for a decade, going No. 1 overall in the 2011 NFL Draft.
In that time, he’s made three Pro Bowls, won the MVP, NFL Offensive Player of the Year, made first-team All-Pro in 2015, and was Rookie of the Year for the Panthers.