Cam Newton is the biggest winner of free agency

This is the Morning Win, by Andy Nesbitt

It’s been a wild few days of NFL news with many big names going to new homes thanks to the dizzying start to free agency.

The biggest winner so far, though, is a guy who isn’t going anywhere. That man is Cam Newton.

OK, Trent William is a pretty big winner, too, as the 49ers made him the highest-paid offensive lineman in NFL history, which has to feel pretty good. Also, J.J. Watt is no longer on the Texans, which has to feel pretty good, too.

There were also some other winners and losers in the first few days of moves, too.

But let’s get back to Newton. Things didn’t seem to be too great for the former NFL MVP just a few months ago. The Patriots went 7-9 in his first season with the team and he struggled quite a bit down the stretch. Newton was also on a one-year deal so it looked like his time with Bill Belichick and Co. might be brief.

Then last week the Patriots re-signed him to another one-year deal – this one worth $14M – which seemed like a good move for both parties.

Well, things have gotten so much better for Newton in the past couple of days and all he had to do was sit there and watch it all go down, just like all of us.

Belichick has spent the past few days doing what he does best – Bill Belichick-type things. He has opened his GM checkbook and added key players on both sides of the ball. But it’s the new guys on offense – TEs Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith and WRs Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne – who will make the biggest impact in Newton’s life.

The Patriots last year lacked weapons on offense. Now they have added the top two tight ends available in free agency and two new wide receivers that have proven themselves before at the NFL level.

There is still a chance that the Patriots find someone else to play QB, either through the draft or a trade. But as of right now it looks like Newton, who is only 31 years old, is the guy and I personally think the right guy to lead this team in 2021.

The Patriots are going to be a lot better on both sides of the ball this coming season. The moves they’ve made on defense, including bringing back Kyle Van Noy last night, have them ready to be one of the top units in the NFL. That will also help Newton a great deal.

The success of the offense, however, will be up to Newton. A regular offseason should help Newton this year as he’ll get a normal chance to bond and build things with his new guys.

Newton now finds himself at the center of what should be a good football team, if not a very good football.

And that’s gotta feel pretty good.

Quick hits: Men’s college hoops players rip NCAA… Carson Wentz’s sweet gesture… Prayers for Shawn Bradley… And more. 

– Many college basketball players ripped the NCAA before the start of the men’s tourney with #NotNCAAProperty hashtag.

– Carson Wentz found a very sweet way to unveil his new number with the Colts.

– Many people in the NBA world sent prayers and support to Shawn Bradley, who was paralyzed in a bicycle accident.

– CBS made some soap opera March Madness parodies that were actually pretty funny.

– The video of Illinois WR Josh Imatorbhebhe’s record-breaking, 46.5-inch vertical jump is pretty darn incredible.

– Candace Parker rightfully shut down Shaq’s suggestion of lowering the WNBA rims so there would be more dunks

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