Which Cam Newton will the New England Patriots get in 2020: The 2015 NFL MVP who guided the Carolina Panthers to a 15-1 season? Or the injury-plagued quarterback who appeared in just two games last year?
According to Tyler R. Tynes, the Patriots don’t necessarily need the former version of Newton to achieve their goal.
Tynes produced and narrated The Ringer’s “The Cam Chronicles,” a six-part podcast series documenting Newton’s entire football journey from Pop Warner to the pros. And after a year of extensive reporting on the 31-year-old QB, Tynes believes Newton has unlimited potential in New England.
Download the MyTeams app for the latest Patriots news and analysis
“The ceiling for the Patriots this year should be the Super Bowl,” Tynes told NBC Sports Boston’s Phil Perry on a new episode of the Next Pats Podcast. “Because here’s the reality of the situation: If Cam is even average this year, the Patriots are probably one of the best teams in the NFL. This is the thing you’ve got to bank on here: Him being average is probably good enough for the Patriots to win the Super Bowl, or at least get to the game or the AFC Championship (Game). And so imagine if he’s actually good? Now we’re talking about something else completely.”
That’s a bold prediction — but Tynes has evidence for his confidence.
“When I traced back through Cam’s life, the thing I’ve found to be consistent in his tale is, don’t ever doubt him,” Tynes said. “Because he just wants that. He uses that as a steroid. He’s like Michael Jordan making up a story about a rookie on the Washington Wizards who scored 38 (on him).
” … Y’all counted him out and left him for dead for what he would say was 86 nights (after the Panthers released him on March 24). OK, you just pissed him off. And the last time he got pissed off, he had one of the greatest comebacks in college football history. The time before that, he won the national championship in junior college football and completely changed what the sport is supposed to look like.”
Next Pats Podcast: History shows a motivated Newton is unstoppable | Listen & subscribe | Watch on YouTube
Tynes referenced two defining moments in Newton’s career. The first came when he transferred to Blinn College from the University of Florida amid a controversy involving a stolen laptop, then led the tiny junior college to a national title. The second came when he transferred from Blinn to Auburn and carried a Tigers team that lost five games the previous season to a 14-0 record and a BCS National Championship.
Newton was written off in both cases, Tynes observed, and in both cases used that as motivation to will his teams to championships.
“The results suggest that every time you piss him off, he does something great,” Tynes said.
That was 10 years ago, of course, and the nine-year NFL veteran must stay healthy in 2020 if he even wants to be the Patriots’ starter. But even at 31, Newton represents a “youth injection” for New England after two decades with Tom Brady, Tynes says.
“You’re taking a man who had a lot of trouble taking a five-step drop at 42 years old and really wasn’t throwing further than 20-25 yards that much and making it look pretty,” Tynes said. “You’re getting rid of him and you’re putting in a youth injection that you’ve never had before.
“Cam said it himself in that video: Josh McDaniels is going to be able to call stuff up he’s never been able to call before. So, what would you rather have as an offense with dwindling talent all across the field: Cam Newton there with a few good running backs and a lot of bad wide receivers, or Tom Brady, who probably can’t move much at age 42?”
For Perry’s entire conversation with Tynes, check out the Next Pats Podcast on the NBC Sports Boston Podcast Network or watch on YouTube below:
Next Pats Podcast: Could ‘average’ Cam Newton lead Patriots to Super Bowl? originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston