Cam Newton could be moving up north next year.
The Carolina Panthers quarterback is believed to have played his last snap for the team after suffering what will likely be a season-ending injury. Reports indicated that the Panthers are ready to part ways with Newton after this season, rebuilding around the much cheaper Kyle Allen.
The Chicago Bears were seen as a frontrunner to land Newton, and now the betting market has solidified their place at the top of the pack. The online betting outlet Odds Shark on Twitter gave the Bears +250 odds to acquire Newton this offseason, just ahead of the Cincinnati Bengals. The site also noted that he could end up staying with the Panthers, though this was a bit behind at +400 odds.
There had already been reports that the Bears are likely to make a run at Newton to replace the largely ineffective Mitch Trubisky. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported (via NBC Sports Chicago), that the Bears are expected to look for a new quarterback next year regardless of what happens with Cam Newton.
"When a team disappoints and struggles and has a year like they're on track to having, inevitably at the end of a year like that, someone always pays," Schefter said on ESPN 1000's Kap and Company. "Sometimes multiple people. But in this particular case I think the first guy you'd look at would be the quarterback. If this keeps up this is where that's going to be going. That's my guess."
As The Inquisitr had reported, Newton is believed to be open to the idea. The report cited NFL Media's Ian Rapoport, who said that Newton would "welcome" being traded in the offseason.If Cam Newton does end up hitting the market next year -- whether on the trade block or through release from the Panthers -- he is expected to generate significant interest around the league. As The Inquisitr reported, the New England Patriots are also seen as a potential option should Tom Brady move ahead on hints that he will leave the team after the season. Brady's contract is up after this season, and he has been a bit cagey about his future in New England, leading to speculation that he may test the market.
Newton is currently rehabbing after undergoing surgery on his injured foot. He is on track to be back by March, likely putting him out for the remainder of the season but leaving open the possibility that he could be back at the end of a long playoff run if his rehab goes faster than expected.