Panthers Release Cam Newton

The Panthers’ efforts to trade Cam Newton evidently did not take off. They are expected to release the former MVP as soon as Tuesday, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. Carolina made the move official Tuesday afternoon.

While the Panthers attempted to deal Newton to the Bears and Chargers, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets, they could not find a taker. Newton had one season remaining on a deal he signed back in 2015. He was set to earn $18.6MM in 2020 base salary; Carolina will take on just $2MM in dead money for releasing Newton but clear $19.1MM in cap space. The Bears subsequently traded for Nick Foles instead, and the Chargers appear focused on the draft. After pursuing Tom Brady, the Bolts no longer intend to add a veteran quarterback.

A Newton release was the expected outcome, given the unique complications this offseason presents for the Panthers to trade their three-time Pro Bowl passer. This will end a nine-year run for Newton in Charlotte. The move also comes less than a month after Matt Rhule indicated he wanted to keep Newton for the 2020 season. Carolina moved swiftly in another direction after that pronouncement.

The No. 1 overall pick in 2011, Newton fairly quickly solidified himself as the best quarterback in Panthers history. He helped the Panthers to four playoff berths in a five-season span and piloted them to Super Bowl 50 in 2015. However, injuries intervened in the late 2010s and will lead the former superstar to the open market for the first time.

Newton, 30, is recovering from the Lisfanc surgery he underwent in December. The NFL’s all-time QB rushing-touchdown king has not been fully healthy since early in the 2018 season, when he suffered a shoulder injury. Newton is not expected to be game-ready for months.

Considering the changes the COVID-19 pandemic has made to this NFL offseason, Newton could be in limbo. Teams are not permitted to host free agents on visits, and while third-party doctors can still examine players, any franchise signing off on a Newton contract would probably want to put its medical staff to work on the injury-prone passer.

Because of this strange scenario, the Panthers were able to pry a fifth-rounder from the Redskins for Kyle Allen on Monday and will be forced to release Newton. Carolina’s quarterback depth chart now sits at Teddy BridgewaterP.J. WalkerWill Grier. The Panthers officially signed Walker on Tuesday morning. Bridgewater signed his three-year, $63MM deal Monday night, and David Newton of ESPN.com notes the Panthers will not carry both Bridgewater and Newton’s salaries. The Newton-to-Bridgewater transition will begin Tuesday.

Newton had regressed considerably since the Panthers’ Super Bowl 50 loss, ranking 30th in QBR since 2016, but the nine-year veteran showed promise in Norv Turner‘s offense early in 2018 certainly would have brought back a trade package of some sort in a normal NFL offseason. The former Heisman winner now must continue his rehab on his own and do so in one of the most uncertain times to go about a rehab effort. The NFL may well end up canceling all offseason activities due to conoravirus-related uncertainty, so it might be difficult for Newton to land a noteworthy contract for the 2020 season.

Carolina will have parted ways with Newton, Greg Olsen, Luke Kuechly, Trai Turner and Mario Addison this offseason. Rhule’s team will certainly look different when the Panthers are permitted to reconvene under their new coach.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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88 comments on “Panthers Release Cam Newton

    • jkoms57

      I think they’ll keep Dalton for the year since Burrow won’t be making much.

      Unless someone offers a pick

    • amx19

      What? Cams washed up and dak is just entering his prime
      Get off the weed!!

    • Wellthisshouldbeinteresting

      It just wouldn’t make sense to do that. I’m not a huge Dak supporter, but it’s a move that even the Jones regime wouldn’t make.

    • jonnyzuck

      no way it happens but can at a discount plus the picks you can get from dak is probably better than signing dak for big money

      • crb15

        You’d be better off signing Winston in that scenario though. At least you know he is healthy, and while he did throw 30 INTs last year that is quite a bit more than any of his previous seasons. On top of all that he is only like 26, and would have a good running game to ease the burden.

    • heartbrokentexassportsfan

      Just saying…30 mil a year would go a long way for help in other places not to mention the draft capital D can get back. If Cams healthy, I think he’s just as good.

    • terryf

      His career started down when he pussyed out of covering that fumble in the Super Bowl

  1. ahale224

    Is he the guy who changed how mobile QBs are being used? Made the RPO a thing here to stay? I guess maybe RG3, but his success was short lived.

  2. joeyrocafella

    This is a sad day in Panthers history… He is STILL the best option for them

    • bigjonliljon

      How so? No player is the best option when he can’t stay on the field. I know that may a small matter….

    • Afk711

      No he’s not. The guy is so washed and thats not a bad thing its just part of the game. Can’t hold onto the past forever.

    • jkoms57

      Injuries aside, the guys been terrible.

      Will have to compete with a young QB for his next starting gig.

  3. driftcat28

    Will Bill have any interest in Cam or is the plan really Stidham/Hoyer

    • braveshomer

      I’d like to see that honestly…well not the Superbowl part lol, but at least playoffs. I still can’t believe he’s only 30.

  4. phillyballers

    He wasn’t in the Randall or Vick category with elite elusiveness. He was more an improved upon Kordell Stewart. If hes recovered from his foot and shoulder injuries he will have a place in the league as a starter for at least a couple years somewhere and I think hell get a chance. But you better have a good backup QB. Hard to imagine him accepting a backup role though.

    • dmarcus15

      He’s a guy that put his body on the line to many times and got blasted. Refs treated him like a running back instead of a QB.

  5. bowserhound

    QB’s get hurt all the time. I can see him winding up in ATL, Denver or Cincy.

  6. Lars MacDonald

    Cam should sit out 2020 and get fully healthy (as much as it’s possible). Then he can come back in 2021 and get a job before the QB musical chairs process has happened.

  7. rascalnky

    Lost all respect for Cam during SB when he was afraid to fight for fumble. No team is going to put up with his superman antics. Cam is still a kid who can’t read the defense and inaccurate with his passes. Not to mention his health

    • JP8

      Yep, he is focused on his barbie outfits with accessories for his postgame interviews. He downfall began with that play, it was all fun and games for him until the media started asking real questions.

  8. phillyballers

    I don’t believe Dak Prescott has actually signed the franchise tag tender.

    Crazy to imagine, but what if the Cowboys rescinded that tag? And went with a Jameis Winston or Cam Newton on a multi-year deal well below the current inflated market value?

    If you’re comparing Dak Prescot at an AVV of 35-40M over say 5 years. Versus Cam Newton or Jameis Winston at AVV 15-20M over 3 years?

    That’s 15M towards the OL or DL or Secondary.

    It’s a crazy idea, never going to happen. But so is shutting down the majority of the US due to a pandemic. So is the housing market crashing. Never going to happen. This is sports, anything can happen. We saw Josh Norman’s franchise tag removed – there’s precedence.

    • crb15

      But why would you rescind the tag and just let him sign anywhere? Better off doing a tag-and-trade than letting him walk for nothing, even if they were going to sign a FA QB in this hypothetical situation.

      I think Dak is good, but not good enough for the money he wants. Also, never thought it was a good idea for them to give big money to Zeke. Any decent pro RB would be good behind their oline. Heck, Pollard average over 5 yards per carry last year.

      • phillyballers

        Idk if anyone is going to trade for Dak tbh. Who’s trading for him and giving him that contract he wants?

        • crb15

          I am just baffled that you think no one would even give up a 7th rounder for him. Definitely not saying that would be remotely close to enough for a trade to happen, but the fact that you don’t think any team would even offer that is laughable. He wants that much money because he has seen similar QBs get similar contracts (Goff & Wentz). I could see Miami trading SOMETHING for him and using their cap space to sign him. Then using all their draft capital to build around him.

          • phillyballers

            It’s not that he is trash it’s that I’m looking at the teams with cap space and a QB need and not drafting at the top of the draft.

      • jkoms57

        Ya pretty far fetched to think anyone would want Dak.

        Not sure what dallas is thinking. Although hes a way better option than Cam or Jameis

  9. Drew22

    I think whoever drafts Tua should subsequently sign one of Newton/Winston/Dalton. Gives Tua a chance to get fully healthy and learn a system before starting. Gives one of the vets a chance to showcase for someone else.

    Maybe the same for whoever drafts Herbert. I don’t know as much about him, but Burrows seems like a day one starter.

    • phillyballers

      I don’t think Dalton is getting released. He’d be traded. Cleveland has 19M in cap space. And they could decide to let Burrow sit until he learns the system. Carson Palmer was a day-one starter too, and they sat him behind Kitna. Also have to factor COVID-19 into this whole thing with potentially shifting dates for team workouts and mini camps, if they actually start the season on-time you’re looking at a steeper learning curve at the most important position in football. And you don’t want the kid to end up like David Carr getting murdered.

  10. Ramon Garciaparra

    How about Tampa as insurance for 43 year old Brady? Veteran minimum with incentives and maybe he has a chance to be Tannehill. Stays in SEC country. Rehabs his body another year. Shows he can be a team guy. Leverages the Brady halo for a starting position elsewhere in 2021. Wouldn’t be a bad gig.

    • Simmons>Russ

      Good call, cam would suit Florida and he could start while Tua comes back from injury. Dolphins could then try trade Rosen for a 5th
      And trade Fitzmagic for a 5th which is handy for a rebuilding team.
      Rosen could be a decent fit at the Pats

  11. iron

    In EVERY situation, Newton throws the ball 100 MPH – has little or no touch on the ball…

  12. Max Jackson

    I hope he gets another chance. He has maybe one more shot, but right now he’s looking more like a case for having a solid OL.

    Culter, Luck and now him. You get hit enough you just can’t perform like you used to. They’re not cars, they’re people.

  13. rycm131

    Never cared for the guy. I always felt like he “hot dogged” it to much. Act like you’ve been there before when you do something good.

  14. Gandalf33

    I believe that there is only TWO possible destinations for Cam.

    1- New England. Bill Belichik likes taking on reclamation projects (Randy Moss comes to mind). Also, Brian Hoyer is not an answer, and Jarret Stidham is most likely not ready to start yet. Cam would, at the very least, be a nice bridge for a year or two when Stidham is ready to take the reins.

    2-L.A. Chargers. The Chargers are going to be moving into a new stadium, and may want a high profile name to help bring in fans. Also, Cam would be an upgrade over Tyrod Taylor, though both have a similar skill set. If Cam hasn’t signed with the Chargers by mid April, then the Chargers will be intent on looking for their next QB in the draft.

    • jkoms57

      Neither one is interested so not sure where u get ur info.

      The real options are Miami, Denver, Jacksonvill and Washington at least as places to compete for the starter.. could sign as a backup for dallas etc

      • Big Angry Baby

        Jacksonville is in no way interested in a washed up DIVA who is full of himself like this guy … not sure where u get ur info from.

    • coldgoldenfalstaff

      Chargers don’t have the cap room unless Newton takes a large pay cut, and Coach Lynn knows Taylor from the Bills to fill in before thejr top pick is ready.

      Very glad the Chargers spent freely to fix their biggest roster holes instead of chasing big name QBs.

  15. crosseyedlemon

    I envision Cam Newton and Andrew Luck going to Hollywood and starring in the next “Men In Black” sequel.

    • Big Angry Baby

      WAY more upside than either Cam or Winston … you must hate the Cowboys like I do !

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