The New England Patriots have been the talk of the preseason amid their quarterback competition, but that took on a whole new meaning when they shockingly released Cam Newton leading up to Tuesday’s roster deadline.
This was quite the way to announce that Mac Jones won the starting job.
However, it was still expected that Newton’s services would be required for the upcoming season given his familiarity with the playbook and willingness to mentor Jones.
Perhaps the move was made out of respect for Newton? Maybe he had no interest being a backup and getting released gives him a chance to sign with a QB-needy team where he can at least compete for a starting job?
What we do know, however, is that this earth-shattering move perfectly aligned with Bill Belichick’s cutthroat reputation.
As expected, Belichick became a popular topic of discussion following Newton’s release, and ESPN analyst Louis Riddick offered up a level-headed take on the madness.
Former Patriots cornerback Asante Samuel blasted Bill Belichick following Cam Newton’s surprise release.
Those are all fair points on Belichick’s roster-building philosophy. Some coaches and GMs would undoubtedly shy away from making a move of this magnitude, and Belichick’s tendency to zig when everyone else is zagging has been one of the trademarks of his successful reign in New England.
Could he be more compassionate? Sure, but it’d be asinine to question the methods of a coach who has the most Super Bowl wins in NFL history and is just 48 wins shy of becoming the all-time winningest coach in league history.
However, don’t tell that to Asante Samuel. In a direct reply to Riddick’s tweet, the former Patriots cornerback eviscerated the six-time champ, calling him “just another coach” without Tom Brady by his side.
Wait, what? How did Newton’s release revive debates about who won the Belichick-Brady divorce? Sure, Brady has a clear advantage after his Super Bowl triumph with the Buccaneers last season, but 2020 was very much a reset year for the Patriots. Did Samuel see the roster Belichick was working with?
With ALL due respect to Brady, the Patriots weren’t winning anything had the 44-year-old stuck around under center. It’s also worth noting that Brady joined a Bucs team that was an elite QB away from winning a title in the first place.
We aren’t belittling Brady’s accomplishment. We’re just acknowledging the context and refuse to let Samuel make Belichick look like the loser in all of this.
Anybody know what Belichick did to offend Samuel? Because this take was totally uncalled for, especially for a former Patriot … who dropped a game-sealing interception that cost the Patriots their first Super Bowl matchup with the Giants. Never forget.