The 2020 NFL offseason was always going to be an active one for quarterbacks. Several big-name QBs have hit the free agent market, while others have been made available for trade.
One of those that falls into the latter category is former NFL MVP Cam Newton. The Panthers and Newton have been reportedly trending toward a breakup for quite some time, and things came to a head earlier this week when the Panthers formally announced that Newton was free to seek a trade. Newton quickly refuted that this was a mutual decision, but it’s safe to say that Newton won’t be in Carolina next season.
QBs Finding New Homes Quickly
Unfortunately for Cam, the QB market appears to be drying up pretty quickly. Tom Brady is reportedly set to take the vacant quarterback job for Tampa Bay, while the Panthers have already replaced Newton with former Saints backup Teddy Bridgewater.
On Wednesday, the Chicago Bears traded for ex-Jaguars starter Nick Foles. Shortly before that, word came down that the Chargers are not seeking a veteran replacement for Philip Rivers via trade or free agency. They will replace Rivers, who signed with the Colts on Tuesday, with Tyrod Taylor, who spent last season as the Chargers’ backup.
Newton and Jameis Winston are a couple of the biggest names still available. There are still a few teams in search of quarterbacks, though time will tell whether a starting spot will become available to Newton. MyBookie had listed the Bears as the odds-on favorite to land Newton before trading for Foles. Chicago was listed at +125, but the odds have tumbled to +1000 after announcing the trade.
The updated odds for Newton’s next team are as follows:
|Team||Odds at MyBookie|
|New England Patriots||+120|
|Los Angeles Chargers||+175|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+4000|
Newton’s Dwindling Options
Could the Patriots replace one former MVP with another? The only quarterbacks on New England’s roster are Jarrett Stidham and Cody Kessler, so it’s safe to assume Bill Belichick and co. will be seeking an upgrade now that Brady won’t be coming back.
Newton has dealt with injuries in recent years, but when healthy there’s no reason to believe he can’t still be a positive impact. The Patriots’ roster is built to win immediately, so it seems unlikely that Belichick would try to hand the reins over to an unproven option like Stidham or Kessler, or a possible rookie if the Patriots draft a QB.
The Chargers at +175 are somewhat interesting, but perhaps the odds should be a little bit longer considering the team is reportedly interested in saving money and having Taylor succeed Rivers next season.
The Dolphins have an established veteran in Ryan Fitzpatrick on the roster along with former first-rounder Josh Rosen. Many also expect Miami to use their first-rounder on a quarterback like Tua Tagovailoa, so Miami doesn’t look like the most likely destination for Newton at this point.
Riverboat Ron Reunion?
Washington makes for an interesting betting value at +350. The jury is still out on whether Dwayne Haskins is the team’s long-term answer at the position. The Redskins’ new head coach, Ron Rivera, was also Newton’s boss in Carolina for years. It’s not impossible to think that Rivera could potentially vouch for his former MVP-winning QB as a potential option to compete and help mentor Haskins in DC.
The Patriots at +120 and the Redskins at +350 look like the most likely landing spots for Newton this offseason. The Patriots would give Newton a good shot at winning a Super Bowl for the first time in his career, while the Redskins would offer him a chance to reunite with Rivera.
Both look like solid values. If you want the safer option, take the Pats at +120. If you’re looking for upside in your futures bet, Washington is emerging as a very interesting play at +350. Those odds have shrunk from where they were earlier in the day (+750), so perhaps there’s some smoke to this fire.