Cam Newton was not very good in his first season with the Patriots, and one could argue lackluster quarterback play was one of the main reasons New England finished below .500 in 2020 and missed the playoffs.
Nonetheless, Belichick reportedly still has a very high opinion of the 2015 NFL MVP.
Newton drew praise from Patriots teammates and coaches with regularity over the course of his debut campaign with the Patriots. According to The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin, Belichick has continued this trend as we inch closer to the start of the new NFL year. New England’s head coach might not be completely solid on the idea of bringing Newton back for another go-around in Foxboro, though.
“Bill Belichick’s praise for Cam Newton throughout the 2020 season wasn’t an act,” Volin wrote in a column published Saturday. “Multiple sources who have spoken with Belichick this offseason said he does nothing but rave about Newton and the effort the quarterback put forth in 2020. The only problem Belichick is concerned with is Newton’s arm strength, with Newton having suffered multiple shoulder injuries in the last five years. In 2019, Newton acknowledged on his YouTube channel that his injuries sapped his ability to throw downfield.”
The admiration is mutual. Newton made as much clear during a recent appearance on the “I AM Athlete” podcast, during which the 31-year-old also made it abundantly clear he would be open to staying with the Patriots. Given the activity — and lack thereof — of the quarterback carousel thus far, Newton ultimately could be New England’s best option under center.
Of course, a few offseason benchmarks — the official start of free agency, the 2021 NFL Draft, etc. — still have yet to pass, and plenty could happen over the next few months. But at the very minimum, it sure sounds like Belichick would give consideration to the possibility of joining forces with Newton once again.