Former MVP Cam Newton Released by Carolina Panthers After 9 Seasons

Teddy Bridgewater will take over as the starting quarterback in Carolina

Cam Newton Released by Carolina Panthers After 9 Seasons
Cam Newton reacts during the 2018 NFC Wild Card game. (Jonathan Bachman/Getty)
By Evan Bleier / March 24, 2020 3:48 pm

In a move that seemed destined to happen since the team signed free-agent quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, the Carolina Panthers have released Cam Newton.

“Cam has meant a lot to this organization and the Carolinas,” Panthers general manager Marty Hurney said in a statement. “Everyone saw his performances on the field. I had the privilege of seeing how hard he worked off the field, and his commitment to this team when no one was watching. He’s the ultimate competitor and it physically hurts him to lose. He willed this team to victory on many occasions and will always be considered one of the greatest players in the history of this franchise. His contributions to this team, this community and the game of football will leave a lasting impact on our organization.”

The NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero and Mike Garafolo reported early on Tuesday that the team would be releasing Newtown after nine seasons because they were unable to find a team that wanted to trade for him. Newton, who will be 31 by the time next season rolls around, is now a free agent for the first time in his NFL career and faces an uncertain market.

The primary reason for that is there are questions about the health of the former No. 1 overall pick, who missed all but two games last season due to a foot injury that required surgery. Still rehabbing from the injury, Newton will not be allowed to physically visit with any potential suitors thanks to guidelines the NFL put in place in response to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.

In addition to the foot injury, the three-time Pro Bowler has also suffered multiple shoulder injuries that required surgery and has certainly had a concussion or two, whether they were diagnosed or not.

Though his play has slipped in recent years, Newton was voted NFL MVP in 2015 after completing 59.8 percent of his passes for 3,837 yards and 35 touchdowns while adding 636 rushing yards on 132 carries and an additional 10 rushing scores. If he can even come close to playing at that level again, Newton will be back as a starter in the NFL soon enough.

But as of now, it’s unclear if he’ll even get signed, let alone be given the chance to compete for a starting job.

If he does ultimately get that chance, it likely won’t be “for a while,” according to Peter King.

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