With the Carolina Panthers winning their last four games behind the play of previously unheralded second-string quarterback Kyle Allen, questions have started to surround Cam Newton, who has been their starting signal-caller since he was picked first overall in the 2011 NFL Draft. While Newton is still nursing a foot injury at the moment, one rival team executive believes that several teams may still be interested in trading for him at some point in the future.
On Monday, Bleacher Report’s Mike Freeman wrote that Newton’s lengthy run as the Panthers’ top quarterback is now facing its most “legitimate” challenge in the form of Allen. An unidentified source close to the Panthers reportedly told Freeman that Carolina may be in for a “tough decision,” given how no one expected Allen to play so well as a fill-in starter. The Bleacher Report writer also cited a similarly unnamed AFC general manager, noting that the 30-year-old Newton might attract a “robust” trade market, with as many as 10 teams possibly interested in acquiring a proven veteran like him.
Furthermore, recent comments from Willie McGinest of the NFL Network have seemingly fueled the fire regarding Newton’s potential replacement as starting quarterback. As explained by Freeman, the former New England Patriots and Cleveland Browns defensive end/linebacker said during a recent pregame show that the Panthers are now Allen’s team, adding that Newton possibly won’t be wearing a Panthers uniform by next season.
.@BuckyBrooks passionately defends @CameronNewton— Speak For Yourself (@SFY) October 14, 2019
"We have to give him an opportunity to be the franchise QB in the system that was originally set up for him, with Christian McCaffrey and all the toys around him, to see if he can be that guy. Only then can you move on." pic.twitter.com/t7oRxCBUnN
On the other hand, Newton’s physically fragile state also appears to have made some teams a bit wary, Freeman added. He wrote that these organizations believe that the Panthers star has “little left,” with front-office personnel for these teams speculating that Carolina might “privately” feel the same way.
As shown on the Carolina Panthers’ Pro-Football-Reference team page, Allen has posted superior stats to Newton in his four games starting behind center, connecting on 80 of 122 passes (65.6 percent) for 901 yards and throwing seven passing touchdowns with no interceptions. Newton, meanwhile, went 50-for-89 (56.2 percent) for 572 yards in the two games he started before getting injured, failing to connect on a touchdown pass and getting intercepted once.
The new report on Newton and his apparently tenuous job security comes one month after ESPN Radio analyst Geoff Schwartz warned that the veteran quarterback could be “headed to another Andrew Luck situation” due to his injury woes and how he no longer seems to be enjoying himself on the field. Luck was only 29-years-old when he announced his retirement ahead of the 2019 NFL season after years of dealing with various injuries.