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Newton, who was recently released by the Patriots, has no plans to retire, ESPN's Mike Reiss reports.
Analysis: In a video released Friday, Newton revealed that New England's decision to let him go took him by surprise, while noting that he would have "absolutely" been willing to serve as rookie Mac Jones' backup. That said, the veteran QB acknowledged such an arrangement could have become a distraction, with the team having committed to starting the No. 15 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. As Week 1 approaches, Newton remains a free agent, but he's a candidate to emerge elsewhere, either as a high-profile backup or potential starter should something open up due to another signal-caller's absence.
Sep 10, 2021 7:56 AM EST
The Patriots released Newton on Tuesday, Jim McBride of The Boston Globe reports.
Analysis: Rookie first-round pick Mac Jones will be the Week 1 starter, with Brian Hoyer likely sticking around as the backup. Newton may be able to find backup work elsewhere if he wants it, but it's possible this was his last shot at a starting job in the NFL. The Patriots presumably want a backup who is stylistically closer to Jones, whereas Newton's combination of skilled running and lackluster passing requires a different offensive approach entirely.
Aug 31, 2021 7:10 AM EST
Coach Bill Belichick said after Sunday's preseason win at the Giants that he hasn't made a decision about the Patriots' Week 1 starting quarterback between Newton and rookie first-rounder Mac Jones, Andrew Callahan of the Boston Herald reports.
Analysis: After a week in which he missed three practices due to a misunderstanding of the NFL's COVID-19 protocols, Newton's presumed lead on the competition seemed to tighten with Jones getting all the reps with the first-team offense during those sessions. Still, Newton took the first snap in his return to practice Thursday and got the nod in New England's exhibition finale, as he did in the first two preseason games. He didn't exactly light it up Sunday -- 2-for-5 passing for 10 yards and an interception -- but his ability to retain his standing after the recent snafu may indicate Belichick's current thought process.
Aug 29, 2021 7:11 PM EST
Newton completed two of five passes for 10 yards and an interception in Sunday's 22-20 preseason win over the Giants.
Analysis: Newton started and led the Patriots to a field goal on their opening drive. He was then intercepted to end his next and final series, although the blame was mostly on his receiver for being outwrestled on a contested catch. Once on the sideline, though, Newton again watched rookie first-rounder Mac Jones light it up, completing 10 of 14 passes for 156 yards and a touchdown. With the preseason now complete, it'll be fascinating to see who coach Bill Belichick names his starting quarterback ahead of Week 1's matchup against the Dolphins.
Aug 29, 2021 6:05 PM EST
Newton took the first rep in 11-on-11 warmups, an indication that he'll start Sunday's preseason finale against the Giants, Jeff Howe of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: It remains to be seen how much action Newton and first-rounder Mac Jones might see Sunday, but this represents the last chance either QB will have to to take a game snap prior to the Patriots' season opener against Miami. After missing time due to a misunderstanding of the NFL's COVID-19 protocols, Newton returned to practice Thursday. He and Jones continue to compete for the team's Week 1 starting job, an assignment that has yet to be announced by the team.
Aug 29, 2021 3:01 PM EST
Newton took the first snap in 11-on-11s at Thursday's joint practice with the Giants, Ben Volin of The Boston Globe reports.
Analysis: Newton also took the first snap in a warmup period and again in 7-on-7s, while rookie Mac Jones was second through the rotation each time. The day before, Jones reportedly put on a show while leading the first-team offense, taking advantage of his opportunity with Newton sidelined for a third straight day due to a misunderstanding of the NFL's COVID-19 protocols. In any case, Newton returned to practice Thursday and assumed his usual spot, but that doesn't necessarily mean he'll be the Week 1 starter. Given the stylistic differences between his two quarterbacks, coach Bill Belichick may see an advantage in waiting until the last second to name his guy for the Sept. 12 opener against Miami. Even if he doesn't quite take it all the way down to the wire, Belichick isn't likely to name his starter before the end of the preseason. The Patriots have their final exhibition Sunday evening against the Giants.
Aug 26, 2021 7:56 AM EST
Newton is back at practice Thursday, Field Yates of ESPN reports.
Analysis: Newton had to stay away from the Patriots' facilities through Wednesday dude to a misunderstanding of the NFL's procedures for COVID-19. The team is less than thrilled with the situation, and it might've even opened the door wider for Mac Jones to claim the starting job. Jones reportedly has looked sharp in joint practices with the Giants this week, perhaps making his bid for the Week 1 start. Newton will look to strengthen his own case for the gig.
Aug 26, 2021 6:00 AM EST
Newton, who was required to remain away from Patriots facilities through Wednesday due to a misunderstanding of the NFL's procedures for COVID-19, is expected to return to practice Thursday, NESN's Zack Cox reports.
Analysis: Prior to his absence, coach Bill Belichick had maintained that Newton was viewed as the Patriots' starting signal caller, however the strong efforts of 2021 first-rounder Mac Jones over the last few days -- including an especially impressive practice Wednesday -- suggests that the team's QB competition is ongoing. It therefore seems imperative that Newton looks sharp upon his anticipated return to the field in order to hold off the challenge for the top job that Jones appears to be mounting.
Aug 25, 2021 3:08 PM EST
Newton (undisclosed) will need to remain away from Patriots facilities until Thursday due to a misunderstanding of the NFL's procedures for COVID-19, Michael Giardi of NFL Network reports.
Analysis: The NFL's statement reads: "Due to a misunderstanding about tests conducted away from NFL facilities, and as required by the NFL-NFLPA protocols, [Newton] will be subject to the five-day entry cadence process before returning to the facility..." Per Giardi, Newton will be eligible to rejoin teammates Thursday, until which time he can only participate in practices virtually. As a result Newton will miss Wednesday's joint practice session with the Giants, but his status for Sunday's exhibition matchup shouldn't be in peril. His absence will afford Mac Jones increased opportunities to handle first-team reps.
Aug 23, 2021 8:04 AM EST
On the heels of what coach Bill Belichick referred to as a "good week," Newton "seemed to strengthen his grip" on New England's starting QB assignment with a sharp effort in Thursday's 35-0 preseason win over the Eagles, ESPN's Mike Reiss reports.
Analysis: Newton, who started the contest, went 8-of-9 for 103 yards, with one TD and no interceptions. Though first-rounder Mac Jones was also effective enough (13-of-19 for 146 yards) after he took over Thursday, both Reiss and Jeff Howe of the Athletic put forth the notion that the veteran QB's recent play has solidified hit standing atop the Patriots' depth chart. While Jones still has some time to make up ground, Howe suggests that "barring a dramatic turn of events over the next 10 days, if Newton's usage in practice and the two games is any indication, he has seemingly done enough to hold off Jones."
Aug 20, 2021 9:19 AM EST
Newton started the Patriots' 35-0 preseason win over the Eagles on Thursday night and completed eight of nine passes for 103 yards and a touchdown.
Analysis: Newton's numbers underscore how sharp he was during his quarter of action, with the multi-time Pro Bowler leading an eight-play, 66-yard first-quarter drive that he capped off with a 28-yard touchdown pass to Jakobi Meyers. Newton gave way to rookie Mac Jones for New England's first possession of the second quarter and saw the latter turn in a sharp performance in his own right, so the battle between the two should once again play a prominent role in the Patriots' Sunday, Aug. 29 preseason finale against the Giants.
Aug 19, 2021 7:37 PM EST
Newton handled the first snap of pregame warmups, indicating he's starting Thursday's preseason game at Philadelphia, Jeff Howe of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: Like in the Patriots' exhibition opener last Thursday, Newton is in line to start over rookie first-round pick Mac Jones. Since the team selected the latter, 15th overall, back in April, coach Bill Belichick has maintained Newton is the No. 1 QB In New England, but Jones could make a push for the job when he's "ready to challenge and compete," per Mike Reiss of ESPN.com. But Newton remains entrenched at the top of the depth chart, at least for the time being.
Aug 19, 2021 4:17 PM EST
Newton relayed Monday that coach Bill Belichick hasn't told him if he'll start the Patriots' regular-season opener against the Dolphins, ESPN's Mike Reiss reports.
Analysis: Of course, the reports also notes that Belichick has indicated multiple times that Newton is considered the team's starting quarterback for the time being, with the caveat being that whenever first-rounder Mac Jones "is ready to challenge and compete, then we'll see how that goes." Per Jeff Howe of The Athletic, Newton "had his best practice in a week" Tuesday, completing 13 of 15 passes (including one drop) in team drills. Jones was also sharp Tuesday, going 13-for-14 in the drills, while mixing in with the starters at certain points of the practice. As things stand, Jones still has a chance to make up ground in advance of Week 1, but he'd need to make a strong push in the next couple of weeks in order to overtake Newton before New England's opener.
Aug 17, 2021 2:33 PM EST
Newton completed four of seven passes for 49 yards in Thursday's 22-13 preseason win over Washington. He didn't have a touchdown, turnover or rushing attempt.
Analysis: Newton appeared to fumble on the opening drive when Chase Young came around the edge and knocked out the football, but the play was ruled an incomplete pass. The Patriots' offense moved the ball better on Newton's second and final possession, which ended in a field goal. Rookie Mac Jones came in under center after that point and led New England to a pair of field goals through the end of the third quarter. The quarterback competition between Newton and Jones is still unsettled, but Newton remains the leader in the clubhouse heading into preseason Week 2 against the Eagles.
Aug 12, 2021 8:10 PM EST
Newton and Mac Jones are both expected to play in New England's preseason opener against Washington on Thursday, ESPN's Mike Reiss reports.
Analysis: Newton likely will get the start and play one or two drives before handing things off to Jones. Early reports out of training camp have the veteran on track to defend his starting job, but there's still plenty of time for the rookie to make a move, starting with Thursday's exhibition against Washington.
Aug 12, 2021 6:14 AM EST
ESPN's Mike Reiss indicates that during the Patriots' first two full-pads practices, it "sometimes looks like the team is running separate attacks" when either Newton or first-rounder Mac Jones are handling the team's QB snaps.
Analysis: With that in mind, Reiss notes that "the threat of Newton as a ball carrier with the read-option is prevalent -- and effective at times -- while Jones often looks like he's running the more traditional Patriots passing offense." To date, coach Bill Belichick has made it clear that that he views Newton as the team's current starter, though this is a situation that remains worth monitoring in the coming weeks, with Jones still having some time to gain ground on on his veteran counterpart in advance of Week 1.
Aug 8, 2021 8:21 AM EST
Through the first two practices of New England's training camp, Newton has "led off every team period," Jeff Howe of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: As could be expected, 2021 first-rounder Mac Jones followed Newton in every team period. At this stage, it's too early to get a clear read on the Patriots' ongoing signal caller competition, with Howe noting at this early juncture of training camp that "strictly by performance, the QB battle has been a draw." For the time being at least, the fact that Newton is taking team reps ahead of Jones is indicative of his current depth chart standing above the rookie.
Jul 29, 2021 12:33 PM EST
The stage is set for Newton and first-round draft pick Mac Jones to compete for the Patriots' starting QB job during training camp, ESPN's Mike Reiss reports.
Analysis: Coach Bill Belichick has indicated that Newton is viewed as the team's top signal caller for now, but acknowledged that Jones or even Jarrett Stidham will have the chance to be viewed as candidates to supplant the incumbent starter once they "are ready." Reiss notes that during spring practices, Jones displayed good "timing, anticipation and accuracy" when he was on his game, while Newton, who had an uneven 2020 campaign "looked more comfortable." Following an offseason in which the Patriots re-tooled their roster, notably adding several pass-catching options, much of the intrigue as training camp unfolds will focus on which quarterback will be under center in Week 1.
Jul 1, 2021 8:57 AM EST
Newton was the first quarterback to take snaps throughout the Patriots' spring drills, ESPN's Mike Reiss reports.
Analysis: Though 2021 first-rounder Mac Jones -- who was next up for snaps in the team's QB drills -- could eventually make a run at the team's starting role in the coming months, Newton remains atop the Patriots' depth chart as things stand. Compared to last season, when the veteran signal caller didn't catch on with New England until the end of June, Newton is "way ahead of where he was last year at this time," coach Bill Belichick noted. With that in mind, it's going to take a strong training camp/preseason effort from Jones in order for the rookie to have a chance to supplant Newton, at least in the short term.
Jun 21, 2021 11:08 AM EST
Head coach Bill Belichick confirmed Monday that Newton (hand) would be on the practice field this week for the Patriots' mandatory minicamp, Kevin Patra of NFL.com reports.
Analysis: Newton sustained a bone bruise on his right (throwing) hand June 4 after making contact with a defender's helmet, but the issue was never considered serious and didn't prevent the quarterback from taking part in OTA workouts heading into the past weekend. The 32-year-old still looks to be in a good place health-wise a week and a half after suffering the injury, so he should be in line to handle most of the first-team work during minicamp. Assuming he stays relatively healthy during minicamp, training camp and the preseason, Newton should head into Week 1 as New England's starter, with first-round pick Mac Jones and likely one of Jarrett Stidham or Brian Hoyer serving as depth options at quarterback.
Jun 14, 2021 7:59 AM EST
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