I love Ty Law. He won 3 Super Bowl’s in New England and racked up a ton of memorable plays. The guy is a legend. Other than Revis, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a more talented CB in my lifetime. That’s why he’s in the Hall of Fame! And that’s why it pains me to hear such blasphemy pour out of his mouth. This week on the Greg Hill Show, the former All-World corner had this to say about the Patriots QB situation:
“I still think Cam, for what it’s worth, is a more experienced quarterback and he would be the better quarterback,” he said. “But, I think for the situation with the Patriots and where they are going with their team, Mac Jones is the answer. I see him being the future quarterback for a long time. I think he’s going to be very good, but to say he’s better than Cam Newton as a rookie I am not going to sit here and disrespect Cam like that.”
Listen, I think we all need to have a big sit down, heart to heart open talk about what Cam Newton is. For some reason when people talk about Cam, they speak like he’s the Cam Newton of yesteryear running over defenders and throwing lasers all over the field. This is not the reality we currently live in people. Cam Newton, in his current form, is a below average starting QB AT BEST. If you don’t believe me, I ask you this: Why hasn’t he been picked up by a team yet? There have been plenty of injuries/poor quarterback play around the league. For two offseason’s in a row, the Patriots were the only team who showed any real interest in him. There’s a reason Newton is sitting on his couch. He’s not good anymore.
If you need further proof, take a look at his last season! Sure, it was the ‘COVID year’ and everyone’s performances deserve to be graded on a curve, but even still, Cam was bad. In 2020, he had a QBR of 47 (second lowest of his career) and threw for 177.1 yards per game (lowest of his career) totaling 2,657 the entire season. Not good. He had 10 interceptions to 20 total TD’s (12 rushing/8 passing) as well. I’ll admit that isn’t the worst, but it’s not great. And it’s not what a starting QB who has been in the league for 10 years should be putting up.
For what it’s worth, Mac Jones currently has a better completion % and better QBR than Newton finished the year with. He’s also 3 passing TD’s away from tying Newton’s 8 and only 1,414 yards away from eclipsing the total yardage Cam had during his one year here. And Mac has only played 5 games. Jones also blows Newton away in yard per game with 248.6. Even if you add Cam’s rushing yards per game (39.5) to his pass yards, he’s still 32 yards behind Mac. Like I said, I know it’s only 5 games in, but it’s worth noting that Mac is clearly the better QB of the two.
I’ve brought this up when talking about Cam before, but revisionist history has done wonders for his short tenure here. How many times a game did we see Cam skip the ball to a receiver like he was tossing rocks out on the pond? Or how many replays/game reviews did we have to see of Newton throwing to one receiver while another was WIDE open? And remember how many reporters/ex-players/fans were saying Cam is holding onto the ball too long? It was consistent the entire year, but since we all love Cam the person, we forget how bad Cam the player was. The majority of fans were calling for Jarrett Stidham to come in and take his place for crying out loud! And that actually happened during the handful of games where Cam was benched.
Another issue I have with Law’s statement is that he brings up “experience” like that’s Newton’s saving grace. Correct me if I’m wrong, but Cam had “experience” last year when he was making bad read after bad read, right? And I don’t think that “experience” helped Cam understand the playbook any better either. Remember when Cam said that he was still learning the playbook this offseason? That’s the same playbook that Mac Jones has seemingly already grasped quicker than Newton ever did. That’s what irks me the most about saying that Cam would be the better QB at this point for this team. Jones understand this offense in 5 regular season weeks better than Cam did in a full season/offseason.
Now, I know what the argument is here, “Sure Cam made bad decisions, but so has Mac!” and I know that may make sense to you, but it’s silly. So you’re telling me that comparing the mistake rate of a 10 year veteran to a rookie makes the vet look good? A veteran should know not to make the same mistakes that rookie makes.
And I know the other argument is “Cam didn’t have any weapons!” and that’s laughable too. While he clearly didn’t have what Mac currently has to work with, Newton still had options. And those options were open a lot of the time as well. It’s true the Patriots weren’t going to be great last season, but that’s not a free pass to ignore the fact that Cam was unnecessarily bad. We’ve seen plenty of quarterbacks look good while their team loses games. We’ve seen it with Mac this year. But too often last season Cam Newton was a hinderance to the teams success.
I don’t want this to come across as Cam Newton hate either. It’s not. And I’m not saying Cam didn’t have stretches last year where he played well. He did. But saying the Patriots would have more wins with Cam under center is so ridiculous it hurts. At what point this season have any of these losses been on Mac Jones? None. So having a QB who can’t throw the ball as good or read defenses as well in the game wouldn’t change the result. How many throws have we seen Mac make where we all collectively thought “No way Cam makes that throw”? Have we seen Mac miss guys or make bad decisions? Yes. Did we see Cam consistently make bad throws/decisions as well? Sure did! So how can you say that swapping them out would have any positive difference on this team?
It’s just common sense! Look at the Patriots offense this year. Tell me, with a straight face, how Cam Newton makes them any better. He’s not a better thrower of the ball. He doesn’t have a better understanding of the playbook. What does Cam do better than Mac other than run the ball? Nothing. And for those reasons, Mac Jones was and is far and away the better option for the Patriots this year and years to come. I understand we all like Cam Newton, but let’s face it, he’s not good anymore.
(Featured Photo Credit www.cbssports.com)
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Mike Sullivan (@msully5433 on Twitter)