2020 Pats: You Cam Go Your Own Way

BaseballJones

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Cam's running ability is good not only for him, but the rest of the RBs. His ability helps the entire running game.

But man, his shortcomings as a passer are catastrophic for this football team. It's not about the number of touchdowns he throws. It's about the fact that he really can't even move the ball well as a passer. Last four games: 84, 69, 119, 209 passing yards on 58.8% completions. Over that stretch, his passer rating is 64.6. He's averaging 6.0 yards per attempt. If you add sacks in, but don't count scrambles (because I don't know how to tease that out from the data), he's attempted to throw 91 times in the last 4 games. Of those 91 attempts...

- He's been sacked 11 times (12.1%)
- He's completed 47 passes (51.6%)
- He's been intercepted 3 times (3.3%)
- He's thrown 30 incompletions (33.0%)
- He's gained 418 net yards on these 91 attempts (4.6 yards per attempt)
- He's accounted for 1 touchdown in these 91 attempts
- He's turned it over 3 times and fumbled 3 times (but NE has recovered those 3 fumbles)

Let's just compare him to, oh, let's say...Alex Smith. It's absurd to compare him to Mahomes or whomever. Let's just go kind of bottom of the barrel in the NFL, in Alex Smith. In his last 4 games, he's attempted (pass att + sacks) 125 passes. Of those 125 attempts...

- He's been sacked 9 times (7.2%)
- He's completed 75 passes (60.0%)
- He's been intercepted 3 times (2.4%)
- He's thrown 38 incompletions (30.4%)
- He's gained 614 net yards on these 125 attempts (4.9 yards per attempt)
- He's accounted for 3 touchdowns in these 125 attempts
- He's turned it over 3 times and fumbled 0 times

I mean, ALEX SMITH has been significantly better than Cam Newton. This is a guy (Smith) who people thought would never play football again. And he's outplaying Cam Newton.

EDIT: Here's the moral of the story - it wouldn't take very much at ALL for the 2021 Patriots to upgrade substantially at QB from 2020. And if the Pats just had Alex Smith right now, they'd probably be in line for a playoff spot. Improving drastically from 2020-2021 won't be that difficult unless for some reason they're just committed to sticking with Cam.
 

vegassoxfan

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whatever they do, they need to do it without Cam Newton, he is finished, been a hard season to stomach. I knew post Brady was going to be tough, but I think B.B. panicked for whatever reason this past summer over # 4, and hence the signing of Newton. Do not get me wrong, Newton was far from the only problem here, with the op-outs on D, the lack of weapons on offense, etc...but the league is a QB driven league, and I personally would rather they had given Jason a shot, but they didn't and as it stands going forward into the seeable future they are only the 3rd best team in the AFC East...it sucks but that is the hand we are looking at for now. I think the Bills will keep the trophy in the AFC East though...

edit...a thought, what about Wentz under center next year, think they could make a deal with the Eagles easily enough
 
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Kliq

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This is pretty amazing...playing around on Stathead football just now...there are all of four quarterbacks since 1990 who have started at least 10 games in a season and thrown fewer touchdown passes than Cam Newton has this year.

Out of EIGHT HUNDRED AND TWENTY-TWO 10+ start seasons since 1990...FOUR have thrown fewer touchdown passes than 2020 Cam Newton.

(BTW: 1993 Mark Rypien; 1995 Trent Dilfer; 2000 Akili Smith; 2010 Jimmy Clausen)
What a weird collection of names; two of the worst QBs to ever win a Super Bowl, and then two just all-time bad QB busts. I had completely blocked Jimmy Clausen out of my mind. That one season he started was so, so bad. It actually led to Carolina getting the #1 pick and taking Newton the following season.
 

8slim

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Cam's running ability is good not only for him, but the rest of the RBs. His ability helps the entire running game.
Eh, maybe. By-and-large, the OL has been very good at run blocking this season. I get that Cam gives McDaniels additional options in the run game, and that opposing DCs have to account for him. But at the same time, if most of Cam's designed runs went to Harris, Burkhead and White, would we really be that much worse off running the ball? Honestly, it seems to me that Cam's utter incompetence at throwing the ball puts more pressure on our run game, than his own running skills add as a positive.
 

BigSoxFan

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Eh, maybe. By-and-large, the OL has been very good at run blocking this season. I get that Cam gives McDaniels additional options in the run game, and that opposing DCs have to account for him. But at the same time, if most of Cam's designed runs went to Harris, Burkhead and White, would we really be that much worse off running the ball? Honestly, it seems to me that Cam's utter incompetence at throwing the ball puts more pressure on our run game, than his own running skills add as a positive.
Yeah, I would love to test this theory when we have a QB who can actually throw a football. I know Cam forces defenses to respect his runs but his complete inability to pass means that Harris, Michel, etc. are seeing stacked boxes almost the entire time they're on the field. It really sucks that we never got to see Harris with the threat of a Brady/Gronk play action. Ultimately, it's just incredibly hard to win in today's NFL with a QB who sucks this much at throwing. Lamar Jackson has had his own struggles and he's light year's away from Cam as a thrower. If Cam wants to remain in NE in some modest Taysom Hill type role, I'd take him back. Otherwise, no thanks. He gave it his all this year but his all just flat out sucks.
 

Kliq

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Yeah, I would love to test this theory when we have a QB who can actually throw a football. I know Cam forces defenses to respect his runs but his complete inability to pass means that Harris, Michel, etc. are seeing stacked boxes almost the entire time they're on the field. It really sucks that we never got to see Harris with the threat of a Brady/Gronk play action. Ultimately, it's just incredibly hard to win in today's NFL with a QB who sucks this much at throwing. Lamar Jackson has had his own struggles and he's light year's away from Cam as a thrower. If Cam wants to remain in NE in some modest Taysom Hill type role, I'd take him back. Otherwise, no thanks. He gave it his all this year but his all just flat out sucks.
Yeah; it was evident at the start of the season, Cam's ability to run the read option was huge for both his own running as well as the backs. But once defenses realized that he can't throw the ball, they have been happy to stuff eight or more in the box to take away the run. You see the decline in his designed runs; at the start of the season it felt like almost every one of those calls went for a first down. Now it is just three yards and a cloud of dust.
 

Captaincoop

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Here's some fine company...since 1970, all the quarterbacks who have started at least 10 games in a season, thrown for 5 or fewer TDs and 10 or more interceptions. The vast majority of these guys were playing when defensive backs could beat receivers with a lead pipe without a PI flag. Nobody else has done this in a quarter century!

Joe Kapp 1970 (3/17)
Trent Dilfer 1995 (4/18)
Joe Ferguson 1973 (4/10)
Mike Phipps 1975 (4/19)
Joe Pisarcik 1977 (4/14)
Mark Rypien 1993 (4/10)
Bob Avellini 1978 (5/16)
Mike Livingston 1978 (5/13)
Archie Manning 1981 (5/11)
Cam Newton 2020 (5/10)
Dan Pastorini 1973 (5/17)
 

BusRaker

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Cam doesn't help the run game, he just allows more defensive backs to pound the box. It's not like he's punishing that with a nice seem pass. Yeah it would have been easier with an Andrews and/or Edelman in addition to White in the middle but I'm not confident it would have helped that much
 

OurF'ingCity

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If Cam wants to remain in NE in some modest Taysom Hill type role, I'd take him back.
I actually do suspect this may be how it plays out. At this point, there can’t be any teams that would pay more to Cam than he’s making now and/or promised that he’d be their starter, could there?

And as long as he’s okay with the role (and if he isn’t he wouldn’t accept it) having him as a clubhouse guy/veteran presence type at effectively a minimum salary wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.
 

rodderick

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I actually do suspect this may be how it plays out. At this point, there can’t be any teams that would pay more to Cam than he’s making now and/or promised that he’d be their starter, could there?

And as long as he’s okay with the role (and if he isn’t he wouldn’t accept it) having him as a clubhouse guy/veteran presence type at effectively a minimum salary wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.
I'll be cursing at my screen every snap Cam takes that isn't a 3rd and <3 in that scenario. Especially if they're taking the ball off the hands of a young QB.
 

OurF'ingCity

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I'll be cursing at my screen every snap Cam takes that isn't a 3rd and <3 in that scenario. Especially if they're taking the ball off the hands of a young QB.
Oh I would be too. If they did play him at all (as opposed to him being a traditional backup) I’d hope he’d get no more than one or two snaps per game in essentially a wildcat formation.
 

BaseballJones

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Only kind of serious question: how good a TE could Cam be? He’s huge and definitely athletic for a TE. If he could catch at all, you could run lots of stuff with him. I suspect if he wanted to, he could be pretty good at it.
 

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Yeah; it was evident at the start of the season, Cam's ability to run the read option was huge for both his own running as well as the backs. But once defenses realized that he can't throw the ball, they have been happy to stuff eight or more in the box to take away the run. You see the decline in his designed runs; at the start of the season it felt like almost every one of those calls went for a first down. Now it is just three yards and a cloud of dust.
Cam's season reads to me like the history of the Wildcat. Once defenses figured it out that these running backs weren't going to grow the ball, the Wildcat stopped being effective.

My other thought about Cam's effect on the running game and the credit you might want to give him for rushing TD's is how many times have we spoken of the lack of creativity or success on short-yardage situations, especially inside the 10, once Cam decides he's going to run? As with the plays where he drops back to pass, his ability to see the field and make optimal decisions has been increasingly suspect on all levels.
 

DourDoerr

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If the Pats are going forward next season with a plan to start a young guy like Stidham, then I want no part of Cam as backup. His career is too accomplished, he'll still only be 32, and he has heaps of charisma to boot. There'd be even more pressure for the new guy on and off the field. Give me a Hoyer type as a backup. Knows what's what and won't overwhelm the locker room. A young QB has more than enough on his hands without also having an incredibly personable former MVP looking over his shoulder.
 
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bigq

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Is Steve Grogan’s team record 12 rushing TDs from 1976 safe? Cam currently sitting at 11. I’m thinking Cam will not see the field again this season unless there are injuries to Stidham and Hoyer but I’m not certain of that.

And BTW Grogan threw for 18 TDs in 14 starts in 1976. Newton with 5 passing TDs in 13 starts this season is really pitiful.
 

BaseballJones

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To illustrate how awful Cam's 5 TD passes really is, consider the context.

In 1972, teams played 14 games in a season.
In 2020, teams play 16 games in a season.

In 1972, the average NFL team passed for 1.1 touchdowns a game.
In 2020, the average NFL team pass has passed for 1.7 touchdowns a game.
Cam Newton is averaging 0.4 touchdown passes a game.

In 1972, teams had a TD percentage of 5.3.
In 2020, Cam has a TD percentage of 4.8.
In 2020, Cam has a TD percentage of 1.5.

In 1972, some guy named Marty Domres for the Baltimore Colts played in 12 games, threw 11 touchdowns and 6 interceptions.
In 2020, Cam Newton of the New England Patriots has played in 13 games, has thrown 5 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

In 1972, 5 TD passes would have put Cam tied for 28th most in the NFL.
In 2020, 5 TD passes puts Cam (with 2 games to go, mind you) 36th most in the NFL.

In 1972, there were 0 QBs with 20+ TD passes.
In 2020, there are presently 19 QBs with 20+ TD passes, 7 with 30+ TD passes, and it's almost certain that there will be 3 with 40+ TD passes.

In other words, Cam's TD passing numbers would have been very bad...for *1972*. They are off the charts awful for *2020*.
 

Super Nomario

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But man, his shortcomings as a passer are catastrophic for this football team. It's not about the number of touchdowns he throws. It's about the fact that he really can't even move the ball well as a passer. Last four games: 84, 69, 119, 209 passing yards on 58.8% completions. Over that stretch, his passer rating is 64.6. He's averaging 6.0 yards per attempt. If you add sacks in, but don't count scrambles (because I don't know how to tease that out from the data), he's attempted to throw 91 times in the last 4 games. Of those 91 attempts...

:: SNIPS FURTHER STATS WITH NO CONTEXT ::

EDIT: Here's the moral of the story - it wouldn't take very much at ALL for the 2021 Patriots to upgrade substantially at QB from 2020. And if the Pats just had Alex Smith right now, they'd probably be in line for a playoff spot. Improving drastically from 2020-2021 won't be that difficult unless for some reason they're just committed to sticking with Cam.
You're quoting a bunch of stats and calling them Cam Newton statistics, but the reality is they are team passing stats, of which Cam is a part, a major part, but hardly the whole issue. Tom Brady put up some lousy numbers down the stretch with horrible receivers, and now Edelman is hurt and Cam is throwing to nobodies. It's going to take a lot to get respectable receiving production out of these guys.

Yeah, I would love to test this theory when we have a QB who can actually throw a football. I know Cam forces defenses to respect his runs but his complete inability to pass means that Harris, Michel, etc. are seeing stacked boxes almost the entire time they're on the field. It really sucks that we never got to see Harris with the threat of a Brady/Gronk play action. Ultimately, it's just incredibly hard to win in today's NFL with a QB who sucks this much at throwing. Lamar Jackson has had his own struggles and he's light year's away from Cam as a thrower. If Cam wants to remain in NE in some modest Taysom Hill type role, I'd take him back. Otherwise, no thanks. He gave it his all this year but his all just flat out sucks.
Teams would be stacking the box anyway, a) because the Pats run a ton of heavy and compressed formations and b) because the Patriots don't have any receivers worth doubling, nor any deep threats forcing defenses to put a second safety deep. Cam does not really have much to do with it. They were stacking the box last year too.
 

BaseballJones

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You're quoting a bunch of stats and calling them Cam Newton statistics, but the reality is they are team passing stats, of which Cam is a part, a major part, but hardly the whole issue. Tom Brady put up some lousy numbers down the stretch with horrible receivers, and now Edelman is hurt and Cam is throwing to nobodies. It's going to take a lot to get respectable receiving production out of these guys.
I'm comparing Cam to passing stats both in 2020 and 1972. Cam is putting up horrific passing statistics (in terms of TD passes) even for 1972, never mind 2020. There really isn't a way around that.

And I never said he was the "whole issue". So that's a straw man right there.
 

Seels

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I don't think I could ever be convinced rushing numbers for a QB are any compensation for the QB not passing. Teams have running backs. Fact is the Pats last had an offense this bad prior to Bledsoe. Running stats are fine if the guys is also contributing to the passing game, like Murray or Jackson or Wilson of recent years, but who gives a shit what the running stats are when the guy is pulling up one of the worst passer ratings in the league.
 

OldeBeanTowne

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Only kind of serious question: how good a TE could Cam be? He’s huge and definitely athletic for a TE. If he could catch at all, you could run lots of stuff with him. I suspect if he wanted to, he could be pretty good at it.
https://www.stack.com/a/cam-newton-playing-tight-end-is-terrifying
Based on his athleticism, catch radius, strength, and demonstrated ability to take a hit, I'd tend to agree with Hall from Stack, in the article above, and with the Kirshner's SBNation article below, that Newton has the potential attributes of an effective pass-catching TE in the NFL, especially as a Red Area/Goal Line threat. Kirshner, in particular, mentions the fade route as a potentially effective use of Newton's skills and physical traits.

https://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2016/1/31/10879500/cam-newton-tight-end-richt-spurrier-sec
I'd mentioned this possibility elsewhere, but I don't see any good reason why this wouldn't be something they'd explore unless Newton is opposed to playing any position other than QB.
 

CoffeeNerdness

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I think they should probably spend their time trying to develop their two third-round tight ends rather than converting the 32 year old guy who's never played the position. It might be an interesting idea as a gadget-y run/pass threat near the goal line if he were still on the team as the backup QB, but otherwise, I see no upside nor do I see Cam even remotely entertaining the idea. Further, he's not even remotely the same athlete as when he terrified those writers by schooling high school kids in a flag football game.
 

Kliq

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Yeah, Cam isn't going to learn a new position. His NFL future is likely as a backup, with perhaps being brought in a Taysom Hill like role in short yardage situations.
 

bakahump

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Yea I think this is both things.

Cam has sucked.
His teammates have sucked.

Had we Alex Smith, Maybe Smith throws for 10 TDs and rushes for 3. (actually lesser Production then Cam, but in a more "Balanced and Current" offense.)

Obvious point but Until we have a better QB AND better supporting cast we are going to bitch about our QB situation.
 

RedOctober3829

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I'm comparing Cam to passing stats both in 2020 and 1972. Cam is putting up horrific passing statistics (in terms of TD passes) even for 1972, never mind 2020. There really isn't a way around that.

And I never said he was the "whole issue". So that's a straw man right there.
The thing that is great about football is that it's a team game. Cam has not been good, but it's not just because of him. The receiver and TE group is as bad as there is in the league and for long stretches the OL has been banged up. Defenses don't have to do anything special other than play big fronts and dare them to throw. Nobody in the WR/TE group has to be paid other than cursory attention by a defensive staff. Opposing defenses on 3rd down and medium or long can do most anything they want and be successful. They can send the house because they know they can cover all the receivers 1-on-1 or they can sit back in zone because there is a minimal threat of a bust. As SN said, Brady struggled getting anything out of this offense last year and that was with Edelman in the lineup and shockingly better TE play with Watson and LaCosse last year. No quarterback would be successful with the skill group they have. It's a must to upgrade at receiver and TE if any QB has a shot to win here. To just look at one player and say they are the reason why they are 6-8 is not analyzing it correctly. You may not have meant to do that, but your whole post was just about Cam.
 

BaseballJones

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Of course football is a team game. But they're Cam Newton's stats.

I mean, just in a small example, consider the Atlanta Super Bowl. Brady could never complete the comeback without Hightower getting the strip, without Flowers getting a sack, without a holding penalty by the Falcons, and without Edelman making an absurd catch on a bad pass by Brady into double coverage. Brady made a ton of plays but he doesn't get the win without the team doing so much around him. On that one pass to Edelman, it was really a pretty terrible throw. Anyone who questions that needs to re-watch it and see just what Brady was forcing that ball into. And he wasn't under pressure either, and it wasn't a 3rd and desperate kind of situation. It was 1st and 10, plenty of time on the clock. He had underneath options, but instead he forced it to Edelman. It was lucky to not be intercepted, and Edelman made one of the all-time great catches to make the play.

But it does down as a 23 yard completion for Brady.

Brady gets the stat.

So the stats I was quoting were Cam Newton's stats. OBVIOUSLY they come in the context of team play. Just like every other quarterback's that has ever played the game. The reason my post was about Cam is because...it was about Cam. I was pointing out that his passing stats are terrible. And they'd have been terrible for 1972, never mind 2020. And it's true. If you want to say that it's because of his receivers, you're welcome to say that. But the stats are what they are - Cam's stats. Just like Marty Domres' passing stats in 1972 are...Marty Domres' passing stats. But I didn't say that Cam is "the whole issue".
 

A Bad Man

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Apart from statistical analysis, what seemed most glaring this year was Newton's complete lack of ability to perform under pressure. There were so many key moments where one more play, or one more good decision could have won the football game. Seemingly, Newton failed at all of them.
 

Captaincoop

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Do you think this is one of the 5 worst reciever groups in the NFL since 1970?

Do the other 5 guys who had seasons as bad as this look like guys who were victims of their lousy receivers, or a group of comically shitty quarterbacks?
 

Super Nomario

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Apart from statistical analysis, what seemed most glaring this year was Newton's complete lack of ability to perform under pressure. There were so many key moments where one more play, or one more good decision could have won the football game. Seemingly, Newton failed at all of them.
I think we remember the ones he failed at (Seattle, Buffalo, Denver, etc.) but forget where he succeeded. Obviously we've got the game-winning drives vs the Jets and Cardinals, but also you've got stuff like leading a TD drive after Miami cut it to a one-score game post-Harry fumble in Week 1.

Do you think this is one of the 5 worst reciever groups in the NFL since 1970?

Do the other 5 guys who had seasons as bad as this look like guys who were victims of their lousy receivers, or a group of comically shitty quarterbacks?
This is not even one of the five worst passing offenses in the league this year, if you look beyond TD passes. It's bad, but it's like 25th-worst bad, not like 32nd bad.

I don't think anyone is making the case that the passing offense has been effective in 2020, and probably no one even denies that both the receiving weapons and Cam Newton have been problematic on the whole. The question is where the bulk of the blame lies, and thus where the efforts to address the issue should target. No matter how many passing statistics anyone quotes, it doesn't help us solve this problem. The stats don't tease out who's at fault, and we all know it's bad.
 

BaseballJones

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Well the answer to your question, SN, is that the Pats need to upgrade at WR, TE, and QB. But of those upgrades, the one that should make the biggest impact is QB. And frankly, if a guy like Alex Smith can play markedly better than Newton, upgrading at QB should actually be pretty easy to do.

I mean, just having Fitzpatrick at the QB position would be a major upgrade.

174-254 (68.5%), 1,909 yds, 7.5 y/a, 12 td, 8 int, 93.1 rating

So much better than Cam.
 

Kliq

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Cam is not the only problem with the offense, but I'm also willing to give all our WRs a pass right now, because I don't know how they can be expected to produce with Cam at QB. How many times have we seen Cam miss open recievers? How many times have we seem him bounce the ball to his target? How many basic screen passes that have been inaccurate? Yes, there are occasional drops and poor routes from the WRs, but Cam is far and away the biggest problem. I think the offensive line is good and the RB position has been very productive and has a good diversity of skills. I think Byrd, Myers and Harry are all competent NFL WRs that would produce much better if they had even a semi-competent QB.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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The receivers are not great. Cam is the worst in the league at throwing the football. There's no question where the bulk of the blame goes.
Yep. This is a no-brainer. Pretend that him not being able to throw the ball 20 yards downfield isn't an issue. The number of short passes that were bounced at an open RB/WR feet or sailed over their head is staggering. Those passes alone would jump up his yards/completion %/etc significantly. The dude is wildly inaccurate short, and basically useless on anything deeper than a 10 yard curl. The other offensive pieces may stink, but its hard to tell without breaking down film. What we can see quite clearly is that Cam struggles with even the most basic screens, slants, and drag routes.
 

Super Nomario

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Well the answer to your question, SN, is that the Pats need to upgrade at WR, TE, and QB. But of those upgrades, the one that should make the biggest impact is QB. And frankly, if a guy like Alex Smith can play markedly better than Newton, upgrading at QB should actually be pretty easy to do.

I mean, just having Fitzpatrick at the QB position would be a major upgrade.

174-254 (68.5%), 1,909 yds, 7.5 y/a, 12 td, 8 int, 93.1 rating

So much better than Cam.
I think, again, you're conflating passing game production and quarterback stats. Yes, those numbers are an improvement on Cam's numbers. That doesn't mean you can plug Ryan Fitzpatrick into this offense and he'd put up those numbers. Miami's receivers better than ours.

Also, just running through these stats - Cam's completion % (65.9) and Y/A (7.3) not that far off Fitz', and his INT rate is actually lower (Fitzpatrick has always thrown a ton of picks). Fitz has a massive edge in passing TDs, but of course we're ignoring Cam's running and all his rushing TDs. Fitz takes fewer sacks. These numbers are really not much of an improvement on Cam's, other than the TD rate, which yes, is dramatically bad for Cam.

Cam is not the only problem with the offense, but I'm also willing to give all our WRs a pass right now, because I don't know how they can be expected to produce with Cam at QB. ... I think Byrd, Myers and Harry are all competent NFL WRs that would produce much better if they had even a semi-competent QB.
You could flip this around - how could any quarterback be expected to produce with these receiving options? What has N'Keal Harry done to suggest he's remotely competent? What has Ryan Izzo? Byrd and Meyers, I agree, are fine (and merely fine), but also the tight ends are giving them absolutely nothing. If you're a defense, there's no one you have to double, there's no one that scares you. This is especially true in the red zone, which is a big reason why they just run it in when they're close.
 

mikcou

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I don’t think Harry or the WR group is good or even average, but SN if gun to your head would you really be more willing to bet that Cam is a competent NFL QB than Harry is a competent WR.

Because I know where I’m going with that every day and twice on Sunday. Cam cant make throws that an average HS QB in Texas makes on a regular basis.
 

Super Nomario

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I don’t think Harry or the WR group is good or even average, but SN if gun to your head would you really be more willing to bet that Cam is a competent NFL QB than Harry is a competent WR.
Yes, for sure. Because all the WR have Cam throwing to them and Harry has by far the worst numbers of the group. Harry was even more horrible last year with Brady.
 

BaseballJones

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I don’t think Harry or the WR group is good or even average, but SN if gun to your head would you really be more willing to bet that Cam is a competent NFL QB than Harry is a competent WR.

Because I know where I’m going with that every day and twice on Sunday. Cam cant make throws that an average HS QB in Texas makes on a regular basis.
Thats true but he has also thrown some lasers right on point. He is completing 2/3 of his passes this year for a better yds/att than Brady.
 

Captaincoop

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I don’t think Harry or the WR group is good or even average, but SN if gun to your head would you really be more willing to bet that Cam is a competent NFL QB than Harry is a competent WR.

Because I know where I’m going with that every day and twice on Sunday. Cam cant make throws that an average HS QB in Texas makes on a regular basis.
It would be easier to convince me that Harry is a competent quarterback than that Cam is a competent quarterback.

Only one of those things has actually already been disproven right on my television for three months.

This discussion is amazing to me. Cam is "Hugh Millen in 1992" caliber bad. In fact, given the era and the rules, I'd argue Cam is actually way worse than that.

SN, I respect your football knowledge as much as anyone here, but you're just wrong on this.
 
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Seels

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completion percentage is a bullshit stat that means next to nothing

I don't remember any player ever having such a large portion of their stats being in very obvious garbage time.
 

Joe Sixpack

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I don't really understand what all the arguing is about.

Can't we all just agree that both Cam and Harry are really bad? Harry was bad when he had Tom Brady throwing to him and I'm pretty sure Cam would still be bad if he had prime Jerry Rice on the team.
 

biggreen

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Aug 4, 2019
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Agreed. Sad commentary on his season (and the state of our TE room), but the discussion from oldebeantowne and others, about whether cam can convert to a TE /backup seems more interesting than whether he is a serviceable Qb. Sadly, his throwing arm/shoulder appears to be shot. But is it that far outside the realm of the possible that he could have different role given his other physical skills and knowledge? Not saying i think it is likely or an answer to all our issues on offense, but worth kicking the tires on if cam was game?
 

rodderick

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Thats true but he has also thrown some lasers right on point. He is completing 2/3 of his passes this year for a better yds/att than Brady.
He absolutely hasn't "thrown some lasers right on point". Like, that isn't a thing that has happened with any consistency. The only throw he can reliably make is a play action pass to a wide open first read 10-15 yards down the middle of the field. Everything else is poorly placed even if completed. They ask very little of Cam, dumb it down for him as much as possible, and he still falls short.
 

BaseballJones

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I mean Cam is leading Brady in Y/A 7.3 to 7.2. I think Brady is the next QB below Cam.
If you look at AY/A, Brady goes way ahead.
Right. Don’t misunderstand. I’m not saying at all that Cam is better than Brady. I was just responding to the idea that high school QBs could make throws that Cam can’t. And facts are, Cam has completed about 2/3 of his passes and has a higher Y/A than Brady.

He’s not a good NFL passer. But he’s not a hugh school level passer either.
 

BaseballJones

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He absolutely hasn't "thrown some lasers right on point". Like, that isn't a thing that has happened with any consistency. The only throw he can reliably make is a play action pass to a wide open first read 10-15 yards down the middle of the field. Everything else is poorly placed even if completed. They ask very little of Cam, dumb it down for him as much as possible, and he still falls short.
I didn’t say he does it “with any consistency”. I said he has thrown some lasers on point. Which is true. Doesn’t mean I want him as NE’s QB next year.
 

OldeBeanTowne

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I think they should probably spend their time trying to develop their two third-round tight ends rather than converting the 32 year old guy who's never played the position. It might be an interesting idea as a gadget-y run/pass threat near the goal line if he were still on the team as the backup QB, but otherwise, I see no upside nor do I see Cam even remotely entertaining the idea. Further, he's not even remotely the same athlete as when he terrified those writers by schooling high school kids in a flag football game.
I don't believe anyone has argued that Cam Newton is the future at TE for the Patriots. I see the possibility of experimenting with Newton, at a position that numerous talent evaluators believed naturally fit his skill set and body type, as a continuation of Belichick's oft demonstrated willingness to explore novel ideas and his expertise at putting players in the best situation to exploit their talents. If you don't place much import in the opinions of the writers of the articles cited, do those of respected college coaches move the needle at all? Do you think their insights were based on his performance against high school age flag football players?

To me, it's clear that Newton's arm/shoulder is shot. His mechanics are terrible possibly due to compensating for the injury. He can't make the throws an NFL QB needs to make and his touch/accuracy has never been a strength.

What aspects of his athleticism have deteriorated since then? Obviously, he may not be as fast or elusive as he was when he was younger, but how do you think his measurables today would compare with the average TE in the league?

As you admit, and, as I stated in my response to Jones, I'd envision his usage as a Red Area/Goal Line threat. However, unlike you, I could see Newton able to contribute in a broader role.

Obviously, as I also mentioned, this "experiment" would only happen if Newton was willing to fully commit to whatever the team asks him to do and his believing in Belichick's ability to get the best out of his players no matter their traditional position.

Where you see "no upside," I can't see any downside to exploring the possibilities of utilizing Newton's current skill set to it's fullest potential. Since he has demonstrated he can no longer make the throws he needs to make, why not try something novel and, dare I say, fun?

Would this experiment distract the team's focus from developing their young talent at TE? I find that hard to believe.

Do you think, based on the talent evaluators who thought he'd excel at TE when he was younger and given his current athletic ability, that Newton may be able to play as an effective pass-catching TE in the NFL? Is it worth exploring his potential at the position given the team's record, the current roster, and his seeming inability to play QB at a high level any longer?

What is there to lose?
 

E5 Yaz

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If you don't place much import in the opinions of the writers of the articles cited, do those of respected college coaches move the needle at all?
I can't believe someone has to say this, ... NO, coaches' opinions of whether Cam could have been a tight end when coming into the NFL in 2012 don't move the needle at all.

Unless it's moving them into my eyes for having actually read the posts suggesting this cockamamie concept.