Cam Newton Saga
By Craig Forrestal @that_sports_guy
If Cam Newton were to ever read this piece these would be my two immediate reactions: 1. I’m honored. 2. Why does this guy get to have an opinion on me? And he is not wrong; I have never collected an NFL game check. My quarterbacking resume is not gorgeous; I served as the emergency quarterback in the fourth grade and had 1 pass attempt in a JV game on a fullback toss pass. So I want Cam and everyone to know that I am not bashing Cam. In fact, I’m a huge Cam fan and I am writing this as sort of my recipe to re-energizing his career.
I think in order for this revival to occur Cam has to get out of Charlotte. This is not because it is a fractured relationship, but rather the transition to a new day in the NFL. Many quarterbacks like Eli Manning, Drew Brees and others are getting old in football years and are nearing the end of their playing days opening the door for the new wave of Patrick Mahomes, Deshaun Watson and other future stars of tomorrow. The Panthers might have one of those future stars in Kyle Allen. He has played admirably in relief of Cam and the biggest factor of all this he is playing on a league-minimum salary contract. The Panthers can retain Allen’s rights in the offseason for another bargain price and this is how teams can use the CBA in their favor. If the Panthers take this route it means Cam and his big-priced contract will be moved. But to where? There are only two possible destinations in my mind Tennessee or Chicago. Both have strong defenses, multiple running backs that can handle 20 carries or serve as pass catchers, young head coaches that understand the psychology of today’s NFL player, and playbooks that need very little adjusting for the rest of the season to make a playoff push.
1. Tennessee Titans
This could wind up being a real possibility depending on how Ryan Tannehill plays this weekend. Tennessee has a solid running game in Derrick Henry, the offense psuedo-fits Cam based on Marcus Mariota and his player profile. Cam has young WRs that nobody knows how good they are because of inconsistent QB play. Corey Davis and AJ Brown could both be All-Pro WR one day and Adam Humphries was brought in from Tampa Bay to hold down the slot duties. Delanie Walker in an NFL Dinosaur but the Titans have an athletic understudy at TE in Jonnu Smith. Cam needs these weapons because from the small sample size we have seen in 2019 it looks like Cam may not be the running threat he once was. The offensive line has seen better days but overall still isn’t terrible. The Tennessee defense is sneaky good continuously holding teams to low scores and somehow giving their stagnant offense a chance to win at the end. If Cam was to be inserted here, I think the proverbial shot in the arm would fit. Mike Vrabel played in New England and gets the NFL player of today. Vrabel is quirky in his own sense, so it would allow Cam to still be Cam with the media and not have to tone down the gameday outfits.
Final Verdict: Inserting Cam is an upgrade at QB and that has to be beneficial to the offense and team overall. Tennessee cannot expect to get 2015 MVP Cam because he is long gone. What Tennessee needs to expect is a proven veteran that is going to rely on thousands of reps to analyze presnap and adjust/audible to the most advantageous spot for the offense on that play. I think this experience has helped Cam realize that living to see another play and not trying to make something out of nothing can help him prolong his career. Cam will be in a game manager type of situation where the ball will be in his hands but the game will not be in his hands- there is a big difference. In a scenario where Cam is throwing about 25-30 times a game and the defense keeps rolling Tennessee could make some noise in the second half of the season.
2. Chicago Bears
Much like Tennesse, the Bears have a great defense starring Khalil Mack. Offensively, the Bears have Allen Robinson and Tarik Cohen. David Montgomery has many thinking he will be special but so far in his rookie season, the running lanes have not been there. Trey Burton has not lived up to that contract he signed a few offseasons ago. The Bears are still waiting for consistent production from either Taylor Gabriel and/or Anthony Miller. But much of the offense’s problems fall on Mitch Trubisky. Before his shoulder injury, he was playing bad football. While the Bears gave up a ton to get Trubisky they might be better off acknowledging their mistake now and having Cam serve as a bridge to the next generation of football. Cam could come in with Matt Nagy and give him the ability to use the full playbook. Mitch struggles to take a snap under center so that handcuffs Nagy and his playcalling week-to-week. Cam Newton would be a fun addition to this division down the stretch.
Final Verdict: They have limited draft assets to pull off a trade for Cam due to the Khalil Mack and Mitch Trubisky trade. They would be leveraging the future even more so in this move but if they feel that Cam Newton is the missing piece to a super bowl title, then they have to make the move. Cam adds a bright personality to the Bears that pairs well with the defense. Cam feeds off good play and the defense would give him plenty to enjoy and celebrate. The big play defense would keep Cam hyped and focused signaling offensive production in Chicago for the first time in a while. Cam could be the missing piece to the running success of David Montgomery and Cam was huge in the development of CMC. The Bears get better as a whole and are betting that he can aide in the development of another talented, young RB.