Cam Newton’s Patriots Deal Does Not Prevent 2021 Franchise Tag

Were the Patriots to see a rejuvenated Cam Newton this season, they will not only have exclusive negotiating rights regarding an extension. They can keep the quarterback via the franchise tag, with Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports tweeting Newton’s contract will not prevent the Pats from tagging him in 2021.

Newton signed a one-year, incentive-laden deal that could max out at just $7.5MM. The non-exclusive franchise tag for quarterbacks came in at $26.8MM this year. This season will certainly be a high-stakes slate for Newton’s future, but the Patriots having the ability to keep him around without an extension agreement is also notable.

The Patriots were the only team to offer the former MVP a contract. Newton has undergone three surgeries since the beginning of the 2017 offseason — two shoulder procedures and the most recent foot operation — and has missed 16 of the past 18 games. And, excepting the first half of the 2018 season, Newton has struggled since Super Bowl 50. His cumulative QBR since the start of the 2016 season ranks 30th, so a Patriots future beyond 2020 cannot yet be considered a certainty.

But he should be on track to be the Pats’ Week 1 starter, giving him a chance to immediately revive his stock — something Andy Dalton and Jameis Winston are not expected to have, given their agreements to be backup quarterbacks this season. Dalton, Winston, Newton and Philip Rivers agreed to one-year deals, which could set up another rare buyer’s-market scenario at quarterback.

New England was prohibited from tagging Tom Brady this year, after the future Hall of Famer negotiated a deal that allowed him to leave in free agency without that bridge to cross. The Pats have gone year-to-year at quarterback for a bit now, with Brady not landing the extension he sought late in his 20-year New England run. Newton will need to answer some questions before the tag becomes an option, but this scenario will be on the table should the ex-Panthers centerpiece return to form.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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11 comments on “Cam Newton’s Patriots Deal Does Not Prevent 2021 Franchise Tag

    • driftcat28

      I can’t stand 98.5 lately either. Damned if they do and damned if they don’t. For all the talk of was it Brady that wanted to leave, or was it Bill that drove him away, I am highly convinced the Boston sports media played a huge role. Nothing but criticism for Brady no matter what. It’s already begun for Cam.

      • bradthebluefish

        The criticism is tough in Boston. But… it can be easily shut off. ;-)

      • earmbrister

        Have you seen any of Newton’s games the past two years? Yeah, blame it on the media

  1. Man if Cam can make timely plays with his legs and not turn it over with that defense, this team could be excellent, if Cam plays like he did a couple years ago they have to be a super bowl contender, not a pats or Cam fan or hater but I could see this being a very scary team this season

    • jkoms57

      Well hes never been accurate and is joining a west coast offense.

      How do you think it will work out?

      Now to be fair, hes a solid backup to use with a limited playbook.

      But if the Pats are looking for a game manager like Brady, Cam is not the right fit.

  2. g8752

    It’s truly comical.
    No one else wants Newton.
    But because Belichick pick him up for a song, with nothing to lose, the press goes off on a fantasizing HOF scenario.

    • g8752

      Investors take note.
      Belichick is the Warren Buffett of the NFL.
      Buy low, sell high.
      This is how you make money.
      You spend peanuts, take as little risk as possible and cut your losss.
      Seems like Bill is saying Brady and Gronk are a loss in 2020 and beyond or at least not worth what they are paid.

      • jkoms57

        Ya ya ya.. we’ve seen this play out before with a washed up Chad Johnson as well..

        At best Cam is a role-player. He could win a few games as a backup, or bridge the first few games to give Stidham more time.

        I really dont see the point in Cam tho since Hoyer is already capable of both roles.
        Hoyer is actually probably better too.

        • jkoms57

          When I think of the Patriots offense I think of quick slants and out routes . TE seams and RB outlets.

          When I think of Cam Newton i think of fly routes to speedy receivers, inside posts, and overall spread offense to open QB running lanes. As well as a hefty inside run attack to keep things opened.

          When I look at New Englands offense I see literally none of that.

          Theres literally no need for a running QB with designed outlets and quick passes to get you out of trouble.. there’s no “Option C” QB scramble.
          Its 1-2-3 read, default to outlet without hesitation.

          And an accurate QB like Hoyer would hypothetically win them more games.

  3. harden-westbrook-mvps

    Why would they even need one? Cam won’t get a franchise tag in 2021.

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