BOSTON (CBS) — There weren’t any physical scuffles on the field when the Patriots and Eagles practiced against each other on Monday and Tuesday. But there was at least one notable trash talk battle that took place between Cam Newton and K’Von Wallace.
Wallace, a second-year safety out of Clemson, apparently got tired of seeing Newton settle for short passes during the practice. NFL Network’s Mike Giardi said that “a large number” of the throws from Patriots QBs were “of the checkdown variety, or on shallow crosses or sit downs versus zone.”
Because of that, Wallace gave a shout to Newton, calling him “Checkdown King.”
K’Von Wallace yells at QB Cam Newton, “Checkdown king!” after back to back dump offs to RBs in 7 on 7. Next play, Wallace yells “running back!” On cue, Newton to White in the flat. #Eagles
— Mike Kaye (@mike_e_kaye) August 17, 2021
Giardi said that despite the goading from the opponent, Newton went with another short pass on the next play, throwing to running back James White.
Newton, though, took stock of what was being said to him. ESPN’s Mike Reiss noted that after Mac Jones completed a touchdown pass to Kendrick Bourne, Newton “made sure to let No. 42 on defense (Wallace) that was on him.”
After the practice concluded, Wallace was asked about the exchanges.
“I ain’t gonna get into that. Hey … I’m just aggressive in my approach to the game, who I go against. I feel like whoever is the opposition, I’m gonna do my best to get in their head, to say what I need to say and do what I need to do to beat ’em, to win,” Wallace said. “And I felt like at the time, there was a lot of checkdowns going on, so I had to let him know that, like, not only are you throwing checkdowns, you’re doing it over and over again. Like, you mastered it. You the king of it. So I had to let him know, ‘You are King Checkdown.'”
Wallace added: “I feel like any way you can get into the quarterback’s head, that’s the best approach to do. To say whatever and mean what you say, basically.”
The 24-year-old defensive back said he appreciated the fact that Newton seemed to have made it a point to go up against Wallace later in the practice.
“I noticed that. I peeped that. I like that type of energy. He’s a competitor, so am I,” Wallace said. “I feel like that type of level of competitiveness brings out the best of him, and so it is for me. I appreciate that, and I respect the fact that, OK, he wanted to see what I was about. He wanted to go with the second team, because I was on the second team, and he wanted to see what I was going to do. So much respect to him.”
Wallace capped it all off with a tweet, saying, “Today was fun.”
Today was fun 😅
— #KMasterLock™$$ (@KVonWallace) August 17, 2021
While this week’s game is still just a preseason game, the potential for Newton or Wallace to make a play or two against the other on Thursday evening adds an interesting item to watch for once the game kicks off.