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Stick With Cam or Ride With Mac? Dissecting New England’s QB Problem

It’s weird to think that many football fans never thought they would see the day in which Tom Brady and the New England Patriots parted ways. It wasn’t that hard to assume that Brady would stay linked with New England until the end of times, yet look at him living his best life in Tampa Bay and the Patriots, well, at least there’s health. As NFL odds analysts dish out predictions on how each teams’ season will play out, one very big question stands in New England, should Cam Newton be their QB moving forward or should they give the job to newcomer Mac Jones? 

Let’s break down why each one should get the job and who we think will end up taking the spot.

Cam Knows What It’s Like To Play At An MVP Level

Not long ago were the days in which Cam Newton was electrifying the NFL week in and week out with his Superman attitude and style of playing in Carolina. Taking into account just how good he was in Carolina was in part the reason why Bill Belichick decided that the man tasked with being the first QB for the Patriots after seeing Tom Brady leave for Tampa Bay would be him. The team also wanted a win now QB with enough talent for the team to not flop as much in the first post-Brady year. Having said all this, I think it’s fair to say that somebody should’ve let Newton a bit more about what kind of a mess he was stepping into.

Newton came into the Patriots on a one-year deal and basically had to do with as little as he was given. Some might even argue that destiny was pitted for him to lose but it didn’t stop Cam from trying and doing the best with what was there. In a pandemic ridden season there was no pre-season for Newton to fully get accustomed with his new teams and especially to fully grasp his new offensive program, one of the most complex in the NFL.

Add to that the fact that Newton had very too little weapons to work with. One could argue that outside of Julian Edelman Newton was working with scraps. N’keal Harry, Jakobi Meyers and Damiere Byrd, the other starting caliber receivers all flunked, and Edelman only ended up playing 6 games in the season. This off season the Patriots hit the free agency market looking for WR options and found a couple of decent ones in Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne, guys Newton could work with. 

There’s no argument that Newton has what it takes to mount a career comeback with New England if given the right tools, will this be the season he bounces back?

Out Of Alabama and Looking Ready For The Pros, Mac Jones!

Just the fact that Mac Jones is coming off a CFP title winning season under Nick Saban’s direction one would assume that playing for Bill Belichick would be like second nature. Well, Mac Jones, the former Crimson Tide QB, now QB for the New England Patriots has the stage set to show up or sit down. His skillset is undeniable, with superb accuracy skills down the field, a cannon for an arm and an eye for finding the tightest spots around to put the ball in for yard gains. Mac has it all to be a star for New England but is it too soon yet for him to think about starting from Week 1? Experts around the league have argued that all Jones needs to be a real threat to Newton for the starting job in NE is to do a little bit more fine-tuning of his skills to become week 1 ready. 

First and foremost, he needs to improve his pocket presence. He needs to remember that he’s not in Alabama anymore, he’s in the pros now and playing against guys like Aaron Donald for example, just hits different, very different. He needs to get in full sync with his offensive line because if he doesn’t and he’s left to fend for himself against the likes of some of the best defensive lines in the NFL, he will get his head handed to him down after down.

Secondly, something that separates Mac Jones and Cam Newton that gives Newton the edge as of now is Jones’ lack of true athleticism. While he has a football IQ that’s enviable and can throw the ball like a wonder, he does not have the athletic ability to truly be considered a moving playmaker QB. QBs nowadays can’t only rely on their offensive lines to do all the work for them. They need to have some superb footwork and skills to dodge hits and tackles left and right, something Jones definitely needs to work on this offseason if he wants the starting job from week 1.

So, Who’s Starting In Week 1?

As of right now and unless Mac Jones is able to put on an amazing off season, the job needs to go to Cam Newton. Be it because he’s better prepared or simply because he deserves a fighting chance to prove that he can still be a relevant player in the league, Newton should be New England’s starter come week 1. The clue here is that the QB job will be Newton’s for as long as he can hold it. If he can’t lead the Patriots to a hot start, expect to see Jones take over and not look back.

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