As the Carolina Panthers prepare for life without quarterback Cam Newton, new head coach Matt Rhule has finally opened up as to why it’s all about Teddy Bridgewater now.
It’s still hard to believe but when news broke that the Carolina Panthers wanted to head in a different direction at quarterback, the fanbase was pretty much split right down the middle. One half felt a change needed to happen with the most important position on the team. The other half couldn’t let go of quarterback Cam Newton, the face of the franchise for almost a decade.
Regardless of where you stand on this topic, the truth of the matter is that from a football point of view, the Panthers were in dire need of many changes. To start 2020, they brought in an entirely new coaching regime that tackled this quarterback issue head-on. New head coach Matt Rhule knew that if the Panthers were to be a competitive team again, it would have to start at quarterback, especially with a new offensive coordinator in Joe Brady.
In the grand scheme of things, Brady knew what he wanted in a quarterback as there was a huge question mark around Newton if he can ever be an effective starting quarterback ever again. It’s no secret that injuries have hit Newton hard and the uncertainty if he could even be able to start this upcoming season, was too much of a risk to take. The Panthers made the right choice as Teddy Bridgewater‘s skillset will be better for a brand new offense being installed that will cater to his strengths to deliver results.
Matt Rhule is right about going with Teddy Bridgewater over Cam Newton
In an article written by David Newton of ESPN, here is what Rhule said about making a big change at quarterback:
"“He is a great quarterback, and we have all seen the things that he has done. I just think as we move forward, we thought this was the right time for us. We saw the opportunity to get Teddy and really felt like he was the right fit for us. It just made sense to us. But it’s not a comparison to me so much as it is sort of an opportunity for us and we took it.”"
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For what the Panthers want to accomplish, it just made more sense to go with Bridgewater. Brady worked extensively with him during their tenure with the New Orleans Saints as Bridgewater has looked sharp over the last few years to the point where he is ready to be a consistent starter again. His familiarity with Brady’s offensive system is a major advantage to have early on.
On top of what Bridgewater brings on the gridiron, his charisma, energy, and leadership are all great attributes to have in a locker room that will have a ton of new faces in 2020.
Newton has done a lot for the franchise as he’ll never be forgotten. The one thing to know in all this is that the NFL is a business. It’s a shame that things ended as they did between the Panthers and Newton but at the end of the day, the Panthers are in the business of winning. At this point in time, Bridgewater puts them in a position to win more games than Newton.
Rhule knows this and brilliantly made sure that he didn’t bash Newton or anything in his recent comments. He knows how much Newton has meant to this franchise and what he did for the community but unfortunately, these things happen. All we can hope is that the Panthers got it right with this incredibly tough decision, Bridgewater thrives on his new team, and Newton finds a new home where he’s able to bounce back and restart his career.
Overall, we won’t know how things pan out until at least another year or so. Hopefully, Bridgewater ends up being the exact kind of franchise quarterback the Panthers envisioned and helps rebuild this franchise towards better days. So far, Rhule is saying and doing all the right things as we prepare for life without Newton and a new quarterback ready to start his own legacy on the Panthers.