The New England Patriots made a huge splash this weekend, agreeing to terms with Cam Newton on a one-year, incentive-laden contract. He will come in and compete with Jarrett Stidham for the starting job, and if Newton is healthy come Week 1, it’s hard not to see him as the starter.
It should be no surprise then to see his odds to claim Comeback Player of the Year improve considerably. Prior to coming to terms with the Patriots, Newton was +1400 at DraftKings Sportsbook and behind the likes of Ben Roethlisberger, Rob Gronkowski, Matthew Stafford, and Alex Smith. A day later, he is +400 and trails only Roethlisberger (+300).
Newton dealt with a foot injury last season that cost him 14 games, and a shoulder injury the year prior that some felt might have carried over into 2019. However, he’s had over nine months to rehab his injuries, offseason videos of workouts suggest he is making progress. If he’s healthy and starting for the Patriots, he’s on a team that is built to compete in the playoffs.
Even if Newton does not have the best statistical season, picking up where Tom Brady left off and helping get the Patriots back into the playoffs would elevate his case further in the eyes of many voters. It’s going to be a compelling competition if he and Roethlisberger can both stay healthy this season.
UPDATE: Lions fans are quick to point out Matthew Stafford as a CPOY candidate as well. It’s reasonable to include him, but I think the fact that the Lions probably won’t be particularly good will hurt his case. It’s a single player award and QB wins should not be a discussion point, but with traditional media it often still is.
Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ/WV/PA) or 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN) or 1-800-522-4700 (NH/CO). NH/NJ/WV/IN/PA/CO only. 21+ (18+ NH). Eligibility Restrictions Apply. See website for details.