Quarterback Cam Newton willing to wait until after NFL Draft to sign with team, report says

Quarterback Cam Newton believes he’s still a starter in the NFL, and he’ll wait until after the NFL Draft to secure an opportunity if needed, according to a report Sunday.

The former Carolina Panthers signal-caller is willing to wait out the market to find a starting job, ESPN NFL Insider Jeremy Fowler said. Plenty of NFL teams desperately need quarterbacks, and it seems Newton is willing to bet on himself that a team will eventually come calling for his services.

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“I spoke to a source close to Cam Newton and he’s willing to wait right now if he has to,” Fowler said Sunday on SportsCenter. “He’s going to be patient. He wants to get his spot back as a high-level starter. He’s highly motivated to do so. There simply aren’t a lot of starting jobs available, so if he has to wait until after the draft, or maybe somebody gets injured, he is willing to do that. He knows the Patriots or maybe one of those teams could be looking. He doesn’t know what they’re going to do, obviously, just yet. They haven’t played their hand.”

Newton became the face of the Panthers when he was drafted No. 1 overall back in 2011, and he led Carolina to three straight NFC South titles, from 2013-15, and a Super Bowl appearance during the 2015 season.

Now, he likely will have the opportunity to sign wherever he chooses to play next. Teams including the Cincinnati Bengals and Miami Dolphins are expected to address their quarterback situations in the NFL Draft, but the Los Angeles Chargers, Jacksonville Jaguars and New England Patriots may show interest in the former NFL MVP.

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Pro Football Focus analysts said the best fit for Newton could be the Chargers. Running back Austin Ekeler, tight end Hunter Henry and wide receivers Keenan Allen and Mike Williams could be more than enough options for Newton, who almost certainly would make the Chargers a contender in the AFC.

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“I think you go Cam Newton with Tyrod Taylor as his backup and (draft) a very good [wide receiver] Jerry Jeudy,” PFF said. “They’re a good roster, this is a competitive team.”