Chargers should get to the front of the Cam Newton line

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Once it became obvious in early November that Philip Rivers wouldn’t be the quarterback of the Chargers in 2020, we identified the two names that should top their wish list: (1) Cam Newton; and (2) Tom Brady.

The Chargers tried to land Brady, who opted to remain on the East Coast. Newton has been available in trade, and as of last week the Chargers (we reported) were debating making a run at the 2015 NFL MVP. Once he’s officially released by the Panthers, the Chargers should run to the front of the line.

When healthy, Newton remains one of the best quarterbacks in football. With teams unable to let their doctors examine his foot, his ankle, his shoulder, and any other body part that may be less than 100 percent, no one was going to send anything of value to the Panthers for a contract that pays out $19.1 million this year — especially when Cam already is making noise about wanting a new deal.

The Chargers need an upgrade over Tyrod Taylor, from a football standpoint and from a business standpoint. They’re opening a new stadium in L.A. with the Rams, one that is destined to contain more fans of the opposing teams than the secondary tenant, if the Chargers don’t start making personnel moves with an eye toward style and sizzle.

Newton has it. Taylor doesn’t. Newton’s attitude already fits with L.A. He’ll generate excitement. He’ll sell tickets. He’ll sell jerseys, becoming the first Chargers player ever worth a crap (apologies to Benny Ricardo) to wear No. 1.

The challenge for the Chargers becomes the timing of a signing, given the delay in getting their doctors a chance to examine him. But since the contracts can be done with the entirety of the compensation hinging on passing a physical, the Chargers could sign Newton now, conduct the physical later, and if for some reason he’s not ready to go, they can stick with Taylor.

The Chargers also could wait to sign Newton, but they’ll be assuming the risk that some other team becomes intrigued by the possibility of adding him to the roster. The Patriots, who are 0-2 against Newton, could become interested. Washington, which is coached by the only coach Newton has ever had in the NFL, could become interested. The Dolphins, who are rolling with Ryan Fitzpatrick and whose head coach witnessed Newton beat the Patriots twice while working there, could become interested.

Barring a non-football injury that ends some other starter’s season, that’s the universe of potential options. But even if there’s one option other than the Chargers, that’s reason enough for the Chargers to move quickly to get Newton under a contract that hinges on Newton eventually passing a physical administered by team doctors.

50 responses to “Chargers should get to the front of the Cam Newton line

  1. Well, and ya but, is he healthy? Because when he isn’t healthy he sure does stink. He’s never really had very good mechanics in throwing, but was always big enough and strong enough to overcome that. The second he started breaking down, the downhill slide was fast and furious.

  2. They should also get in line for another backup QB after he’s hurt in two weeks and out for the season yet again.

    no one was going to send anything of value to the Panthers for a contract that pays out $19.1 million this year — especially when Cam already is making noise about wanting a new deal.

    Oh, he’s going to get a new deal for sure. It’s not going to be something to his liking though. He was complaining about only getting $19.1M. He’ll be extremely lucky to get half of that. To be honest, anyone who signs him should put per-game roster bonuses in the deal so they aren’t paying him a ton of money to sit on the injured list yet again.

  3. The LA Chargers screwed up hugely dumping Rivers prematurely believing they could sign Tom Brady. Now their mismanagement extends to signing Cam Newton? Cam is rife with re-occurring injuries and is kind of a head case which will only be compounded residing in glitzy Los Angeles. Cams not going to sell tickets. He’s no where the QB that Philip Rivers is. Look. Spanos and lap dog Telesco really mis-managed this one. Now there suggesting Cam Newton is a “better fit” than Philip Rivers? Hardly. Not even the Panthers want him. Why would the Chargers? Short of keeping Rivers,Telesco should have gone after Taysom Hill who is a leader and solid QB. But no, they didn’t think of that. Sad.

  4. Can’t see Cam staying healthy for 8 games let alone 16. I also can’t see much demand for his services. The Chargers should be able to wait him out and get him on the cheap.

  5. I disagree. Waiting until released is only way you get a decent contract with him. If you trade(give up some value), absorb his current contract that he want to renegotiate, already. Renegotiate means he thinks he deserves more money. Letting him get fired tells him that’s not the case. You then negotiate new deal and will get longer contract, at market value with incentives.

    Other teams want him? I don’t think so, but even if they did, so what? NE has no cap space. The Dolphins wont can Fitz for Cam.

  6. Why? You already have a mediocre stop-gap QB who will keep the seat warm for whichever QB they select with their Top 6 pick.

  7. You lost me at “when healthy”. Unless the Chargers are shooting to the top pick in the draft next year probably best they ignore your advice.

  8. lethalcecil says:
    March 24, 2020 at 12:16 pm
    Why would anyone get in line for Scam Newton?


    As someone commented on another article, no one’s buying tickets to see Tyrod Taylor throw a football. Newton offers enough intrigue to generate some sales and, at best, change of scenery might help him turn things around.

  9. Easton Stick is entering his second year, Easton Stick is the guy that got Carson Wentz to his final championship game at North Dakota State, Carson was hurt. Stick has four FCS college championships. I think they will go with Easton Stick.

  10. That is a tricky injury he is coming back from that frequently never fully heals. Even with doctors checking on it now you’re just not going to know until a ways down the line if it’s going to stay better.

  11. No way on Cam. If you’re going to take a chance on a “risky” QB like Cam, Winston has the higher upside. Cam’s passing game is horrible, he can’t find anybody downfield and when he does he over throws them. Winston has proven he can hit people downfield. The problem is… you’re never really sure if it’s going to be your guy or theirs.

  12. Some of the people writing comments here are crazy. Florio is right. Cam is one of the best QB’s in the NFL. I don’t know what most of you are watching. There are only a handful of QB’s who MIGHT be better: Mahomes, Rodgers, Brees, Wilson, Brady. He’s better than Dak, Wentz, DeShaun, Ben. He’s a NFL MVP!

  13. Cam is a running QB, like Luck his body is falling apart greatly reducing his ability just like running backs very short shelf life. His best bet since he is probably only good for about 4 games would to be a $5 million a year back-up to Lamar (who will be lucky to make it to his second contract). Can’t see any team, at least not in GM/coach desperation mode, willing to take a chance with him as the starter and for the money he wants.

  14. As a Broncos fan, I fully support Cam Newton to the Chargers. It will be fun watching Cam see ghosts twice a year when Miller comes charging through the rookie LT the Chargers are gonna draft. Chubb will be back and with the addition of Jurell Casey, Newton will panic under all that pressure and throw picks.

  15. Assuming Cam Newton is healthy –

    1 year prove it deal, low base with high incentives for production.
    If he plays 15+ games and plays well, he gets paid well.
    If he is so-so he gets a lot less.
    If he’s bad he gets even less.

    1 year deal, no tag allowed.
    If Cam does well, he has a chance at a big contract.
    The team got a good deal for a year, at no cost in draft picks, and they get a comp pick if he goes elsewhere.

  16. If healthy and that’s a big IF, he’s an upgrade over Tyrod Taylor.

    However, while Newton is athletically gifted, I’ve never seen anyone play with such talents and be such a bore to watch at the same time. He seems to play with this sleepy & lackadaisical attitude, never any sense of urgency, lazily calling out audibles or commands at the line, never, I mean never has any fire in his eyes or looks to challenge his teammates.

    However, as boring as he is to watch play, I don’t think the Chargers have much of a choice, unless they plan to move forward with Tyrod and potentially draft a QB like Herbert if he’s still around when they pick.

  17. Do your homework on him but he carried a team with just about no players on offense to the Super Bowl. If you can get him at 80% of his MVP year you have a top 15 QB. People won’t like him personally but if he is healthy that won’t matter. The team and fans will love winning and that wins them over every time. Even Vick got love when he played well.

  18. One of best QBs in league FIVE YEARS AGO. Average since (at least passing). Pretty average before. Lifetime 86 rating, was 99 in MVP year. Not worth $19 mil plus the headaches and first headache with him will be that he thinks he’s worth more than $19 mil (and sure he wants multi-year with guarantees). If “fantasy” football is your thing, he’s the perfect QB as I think that’s the world he lives in.

  19. If it’s all about Revenue? by all means go ahead sign him up, but if it’s all about winning? that would be a hard no

  20. No owner wants this 30 + year old clown dressing up like an idiot with his mop stickin out in every direction standing up in front of tv cameras representing their team…how long you think the Patriots would put up with that….he belongs in the circus

  21. skinsdiehard says:
    March 24, 2020 at 1:11 pm
    Some of the people writing comments here are crazy. Florio is right. Cam is one of the best QB’s in the NFL. I don’t know what most of you are watching. There are only a handful of QB’s who MIGHT be better: Mahomes, Rodgers, Brees, Wilson, Brady. He’s better than Dak, Wentz, DeShaun, Ben. He’s a NFL MVP!


    January, 2015, apparently, has the ability to embody people and write on message boards.

  22. Very good Ravens backup.
    Chargers makes sense to sell tickets.
    I think Bears would have gone to playoffs with Cam.
    Dont like the diva personally, but he’s a much better player than trolls here suggesting.

  23. Mr. Florio had to do some research to find San Diegan Benny Ricardo! He was an SDSU Aztec as well.

  24. When healthy, Newton remains one of the best quarterbacks in football.


    If he can’t run people over or be a threat running, he’s not a very good QB. The problem is his body can’t take the punishment of running the ball any more.

    He’ll sell tickets but Cam a pocket passer? That will be entertaining for all the wrong reasons.

  25. wow is that really the way you want your GM to work is looking for players because of “style and sizzle” If I owned a team and the GM can in and told me that was what he wanted to do I would fire him.

  26. A perfect relationship.. A quarterback with no heart that would not dive for a fumble in the biggest game of his life gets signed by an ownership with no heart. PERFECT

  27. Hollywood Cam and his over the top 1st down celebrations and endzone ball stealing from teammates to give to the fans would fit perfectly in LA!

  28. When healthy, Newton remains one of the best quarterbacks in football.


    He really doesn’t. When healthy sCam’s rankings we’re in the bottom 20 of the NFL. He has never nor will he ever be one of the best QB’s in the NFL.

    Also, a few things…..

    First, ranking him above Brady. Yeahhh, no. He was never anyones 1A “get” ahead of Tom Brady. No dice. Not even in the discussion. The other thing…..

    Tyrod Taylor is a better QB than sCam Newton. It is what it is, Taylor has betrer throwing mechanics, a higher work ethic and can actually stay healthy.

  29. Why? It’s significantly cheaper to role with Taylor and whichever QB they take at #6 than it would be to bring in Newton as the starter (which is what he would expect to be). Let someone else overpay for an injury prone, run first QB with a jacked up shoulder and who has never succeeded outside of a college based offense.

  30. I’ve tried hard to align my thinking with Mr. Florio and have had some success. He’s probably right on this one from a football stance. The problem with Cam is he dresses like a cartoon character. It’s like mission impossible to take the guy serious after a bad game when he comes out dressed like Capt. Kangaroo.

  31. The Same people that say Cam was good 5 years ago are the same ones clamoring for Josh Gordon to come back to the league.

  32. This article seems as if it was written by Scam Newton’s agent. Why would the Chargers want a broken QB with injury history, wants a new contract, and has a horrible work ethic? They can do much better then sCam to head their team. The only reason they’d want to go to the front of the line is so they can Tank for Trevor.

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