Cam Newton – Former Carolina Panthers QB
Whether the league has officially given up on Cam Newton is still undecided. The iconic quarterback remains on the market after opting to make a sensational return to the Carolina Panthers midway through the 2021 season, which provided a spark not seen before during the Matt Rhule era and brought fans flocking back to the stands at Bank of America Stadium.
Newton inspired the Panthers to a memorable Week 10 victory at the Arizona Cardinals. But things didn’t go according to the fairytale script thereafter and as soon as Sam Darnold was fit enough to participate, Rhule removed the former NFL MVP from the starting lineup.
It was always going to be difficult for Newton given how late he came into the organization and Carolina’s obvious freefall following a 3-0 start. General manager Scott Fitterer stated that the lines of communication remain open regarding another year for the Auburn product, but it does appear unlikely at this stage.
If the Panthers don’t give him a suitable opportunity, then it’ll be a nervous wait for Newton. Teams seemed to give him a wide berth after his release by the New England Patriots last summer and accepting a backup role might be his best avenue to remain in the league right now.
Newton has enough going on away from the gridiron with his blossoming production company and his 7on7 youth initiative that’s inspiring the next generation. Some fans would love to see him return with a full offseason to prepare, but they should also come to terms with the fact we might not see the signal-caller suit up in a Carolina uniform again.