Maybe it’s just because he’s never beaten him.
Or maybe it’s because when well, Cam Newton‘s one of the most difficult puzzles to solve in the NFL.
Either way, Patriots coach Bill Belichick has always had a high regard for the former MVP quarterback, whom he picked up on the cheap Sunday night.
“When you’re talking about mobile quarterbacks, guys that are tough to handle, tackle, can throw, run, make good decisions — I mean, I would put Newton at the top the list,” Belichick said in 2017, via Mike Reiss of ESPN.com. “Not saying that there aren’t a lot of other good players that do that, but I would say, of all the guys we play or have played recently in the last couple of years, he’s the hardest guy to deal with. He makes good decisions, he can run, he’s strong, he’s hard to tackle. He can do a lot of different things, beat you in a lot of different ways. We saw that in the game down there in ’13, so I would put him at the top of the list.
“Not saying the other guys aren’t a problem, because they are, but he’s public enemy No. 1.”
The Patriots lost both those games to the Panthers. In those two meetings. Newton was 41-of-57 (71.9 percent), for 525 yards with six touchdowns and one interception.
How healthy he proves to be after last year’s foot injury and the previous shoulder problems will determine how successful a gamble it is. But for a coach who loves to buy scratch-and-dent items and polish them up, the value is obvious.