Over the last couple of months, former Pro Bowl quarterback Cam Newton has continued to float in the free-agent market. Newton has remained without a team as he has had much difficulty finding his next landing spot in the NFL. One of the organizations that have been heavily linked to the star quarterback is the Los Angeles Chargers, but that chatter has seemingly cooled down. With that said, the Chargers have opened up as to why they decided to pass on bringing in the former league MVP.
Cam Newton’s rough offseason
The writing had been on the wall for Newton’s departure from the Carolina Panthers after nine seasons.
He was coming off another injury-plagued campaign that saw him miss the last 14 games of the regular season. Newton was also heading into the final year of his five-year, $103.8 million deal that only further suggested that the Panthers would consider moving forward without him.
Since Carolina parted ways with him this offseason, there has been little to no movement in his direction with no team expressing significant interest in bringing him in. Meanwhile, the dialogue has centered around rumors more so than actually reporting of teams talking with him.
Throughout the process, the Chargers have remained at the top of the list of teams that could have taken a strong push toward bringing him aboard. There hadn’t been much clarity on the front until recently with Los Angeles finally coming out to reveal why the elected not to add him to the mix.
Why the Chargers passed on Cam Newton
After the Chargers decided to move on from longtime starter Philip Rivers, it opened up the conversation to their next potential answer at the quarterback position.
That immediately saw the dialogue move toward Newton being an option, but that route never seemingly came to fruition. In a recent interview with Zach Gelb of CBS Sports Radio, Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn discussed why the franchise ultimately decided to move on from signing the former Pro Bowler. (H/T CBS Sports)
“I feel really good about the quarterback room that I have,” said Lynn. “With Tyrod Taylor, Easton Stick — those are guys that a lot of people don’t talk about, but he was a Division I AA star– he won like three national championships. He’s a hell of a leader, hell of a professional and I think he has a bright future in this league one day.”
That shouldn’t come as much of a surprise given that the Chargers had initially voiced strong confidence in Tyrod Taylor after they released Rivers. The team could have smoothly gone in the direction of adding Newton, but their plans were already set on adding a quarterback through this year’s draft, which they selected former Oregon standout Justin Herbert.
The Chargers had their opportunity to add Newton if they so desired, but that wasn’t in the cards for their plans to add a young quarterback to groom into potentially being their long-term answer.
Where will Cam Newton land?
With the Chargers off the list of potential landing spots, the list has grown progressively smaller as time has rolled by this offseason.
The Chicago Bears were once believed to be an option, but they chose to acquire Nick Foles over Newton. The New England Patriots have remained on the table as far as rumors go, but there hasn’t been any movement toward that possibility.
The Patriots appear to be committed to giving Jarrett Stidham a chance to prove himself as a viable starting quarterback. It may all come down to him becoming more accepting of the idea that he will have to initially take on the role as a backup with another team.
Ultimately, only time will tell when and where his next opportunity will be.