BOSTON (CBS) — The Patriots signed Cam Newton on Sunday, but head coach Bill Belichick was doing his homework on the quarterback for months. Part of that homework included chatting with Newton’s former offensive coordinator in Carolina, who gave the quarterback a glowing recommendation.
According to The MMQB’s Albert Breer, Belichick reached out to Carolina offensive coordinator Norv Turner for his thoughts on Newton, and Turner had some really nice things to say about the 31-year-old passer. Though many highlight concerns about Newton’s health, Turner believes the quarterback’s injuries are all in the past.
“My whole deal is, when Cam was healthy, and we were there with him [in 2018], we were 6–2,” Turner told Breer Sunday evening after New England reportedly signed Newton to a one-year deal. “Just look at the tape—played his ass off. His issue was more health than anything else, and from what I understand, I don’t think these are health issues that he can’t overcome. He’s had the time off now. I think he’ll be great.”
Newton played just two games in 2019 after being hampered by a foot injury, and missed a pair of games in 2018 with a shoulder injury. Carolina finished 6-8 in games that Newton started in 2018, with the quarterback throwing for just under 3,400 yards, 24 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. He completed a career-high 67.9 percent of his passes that season.
We’ll see how Newton fits in New England, as he looks to take over for the departed Tom Brady. He’ll have to beat out Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer in training camp, but Turner has high hopes for Newton’s fit with the Patriots.
“I think it’ll be really good for Cam,” he said. “And I think it’ll be good for the Patriots.”