BOSTON (CBS) — As he prepares for his first game as starting quarterback of the New England Patriots, Cam Newton is still on cloud nine over his new team. On Monday, he said his fit with the Patriots is a “match made in heaven.”
On his first Monday morning interview on WEEI, Newton admitted that he wondered about his fit with the team when he first signed on July 8. He didn’t know what to expect from the franchise, especially head coach Bill Belichick. But any concern about his and Belichick’s relationship were put at ease after his first conversation with the coach, and his time with the Patriots has been unbelievable so far.
“I didn’t know what to expect,” Newton told The Greg Hill Show. “The same questions that a lot of people — and talk shows, gossip talk, and barber-shop talk, and chitter-chatter text messages — wanted to know, I wanted to know as well. Is it real what they say about Belichick? I didn’t know. I think, honestly, it’s been a match made in heaven for me, just knowing that I’m at a place where everything is pulling in the same direction and everything is geared toward winning.
“Honestly it’s been so overwhelming at times that I just haven’t been able to grasp it from a whole totality standpoint,” added Newton. “I was in Carolina, and had given everything to that organization that I possibly can, and I will always have a place in my heart for Carolina. But as a professional, you go where you’re summoned to go, and what’s best for your career. Just as it will be what’s best for the organization. I’ve just been loving myself and loving this opportunity I’ve had, coming into this position.”
Newton gave an extremely honest answer when asked why people didn’t think he and Belichick would mesh.
“It’s because I’m a black athlete,” he told former Patriots tight end Jermaine Wiggins. “A quarterback who for a longtime has been unapologetic. It’s because I have carried myself in a way the media hasn’t given me my just due. But at the same time I do understand. I don’t have no type of resentment toward that. I embrace who I am. I embrace in the moment. I live in the moment. One of the quotes that I live by is ‘Carpe diem.’ Throughout it all I’ve been able to see an opportunity.
“I went down a list of things I expect from Bill Belichick, just like Bill Belichick went down a list of things he wants from Cam Newton. I think the narrative coming here was kind of stereotypical and an unjust vibe just to see, ‘We’ve heard this about Cam Newton. We’ve heard he’s a primadonna. He’s this and that.’ But when you really put a microscope to who I really am there has been a lot of favoritism that has not been favorable for my benefit,” Newton explained. “But yet through it all I’m not going to make this about me. I want to make this about how to lead this team and just try and gain these guys’ trust because I think that’s the biggest thing that I have, or that I had the biggest challenge of. Letting these guys understand, ‘Listen man, I know there has been a lot that has been said.’ I could feel the eyes and the attention on me as soon as I walked into the facility. But at the end of the day you guys have to know a lot of that is B.S.”
Newton will make his first start with the Patriots on Sunday when they welcome the Miami Dolphins to Gillette Stadium. The 31-year-old said he isn’t feeling any pressure as the guy taking over for Tom Brady.
“No sir, no sir. And I think the world of Tom,” said Newton. “Just having, not more of a bird’s eye view, but really knowing the people who really knew him on a day-to-day basis and how they speak so highly of him, and just understanding the greatness that you hear of a person like that, it’s great to hear.
“But as far as pressure? No sir. I think the preparation that’s put forth in where I have been in my career – the dark moments, the low moments, and obviously the high moments – has prepared me for this,” he said.
You can watch the Patriots kick off their 2020 season next Sunday on WBZ-TV — the home of the New England Patriots! Coverage begins Friday night at 7 p.m. with Patriots All Access and kicks off Sunday at 11:30 a.m. with Patriots GameDay. The Patriots and the Dolphins square off at 1 p.m., and stick to WBZ-TV after the game for Cam Newton’s first postgame press conference on Patriots 5th Quarter!