Cam Newton Impresses as Patriots Win First Game of Post-Brady Era

Newton had 75 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns in his debut

Cam Newton led the Patriots to a win in their season opener.
Cam Newton of the New England Patriots runs with the ball against the Miami Dolphins
Getty Images

In his first game as a member of the New England Patriots, former MVP winner Cam Newton looked more than capable of helping the team consolidate its position as an AFC Super Bowl hopeful in the post-Tom Brady era.

Newton completed more than 75% of his passes (15 of 19 for 155 yards) and had two rushing touchdowns in New England’s 21-11 victory against the Miami Dolphins. His 75 yards rushing were also the most for a Patriots quarterback since 1977, and already surpass Brady’s rushing total of 34 yards last season.

New England’s offense looked very different in this new era — they utilized the ground game heavily, rushing 42 times for 217 yards. Their defense, meanwhile, was typically implacable, holding the visiting Dolphins (who beat them in the final regular season game last year) to just 11 points while forcing three turnovers.

In the other AFC East showdown, the New York Jets struggled in a 27-17 loss against the Buffalo Bills. New York’s offense failed to lift off, managing just one first down on their first five possessions. Jets running back Le’Veon Bell also departed early with a hamstring injury.

On the other side, Josh Allen had 312 passing yards and two touchdowns for Bills while rushing the ball for 57 yards and a score.

Elsewhere, much-maligned Chicago Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky came up big in Chicago’s 27-23 come-from-behind win against the Detroit Lions. The Bears trailed 23-6 late in the third quarter before scoring 21 points unanswered.

Trubisky had three passing touchdowns — all in the fourth quarter — including the go-ahead pass to wide receiver Anthony Miller with 1:54 left in the game.

The performance was important for Trubisky. A turnover machine at times in his career, Trubisky had to beat out backup Nick Foles for the starting job in training camp. A positive performance in his first game could be a major step in solidifying his spot as the starter.

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