Panthers: Top 5 offseason departures who will thrive on new teams

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Cam Newton
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Cam Newton /
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Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) Cam Newton /

Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS. player. 47. QB. CAMNEWTON. 1

Carolina Panthers Player No. 1: Cam Newton (QB)

The Carolina Panthers ended their association with star quarterback Cam Newton this offseason. This was handled terribly by the organization in no uncertain terms. And it left the 2015 NFL MVP on the free-agent scrapheap for three months.

This situation has been criticized significantly by the national media and the team’s fanbase in equal measure. In truth, the Panthers could have parted ways with Newton immediately after they made a $63 million commitment to Teddy Bridgewater. And it has left a sour taste in the mouth.

Newton will get the chance to prove them wrong after signing a one-year deal with the New England Patriots that includes just $550,000 guaranteed. There is a chance he can make $7.5 million with reached incentives. But this represents a significant bargain if the former No. 1 overall pick can get back to the player of old.

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He seems highly motivated and healthy following shoulder and foot problems that blighted his final two seasons in Carolina. Newton will still need to win the starting job over Jarrett Stidham in training camp. But if he can start week one, then this would be an achievement in itself give the predicament he found himself in just a few weeks ago.

It’s easy to forget that Newton was playing at a very high level in 2018 before injuries took their toll. Questions remain about the quality of wide receivers he will be working with. And it will be up to the signal-caller to make the most out of the tools at his disposal.

Expectations are high for Newton, which is something he is accustomed to. If the quarterback can bounce back, it is going to have huge ramifications on his long-term future and the direction of the Panthers.

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