Belichick reacts to Newton being 'bamboozled' by COVID absence


Cam Newton had plenty to get off his chest Friday, including his feelings about a five-day absence from the New England Patriots due to a "misunderstanding" over COVID tests taken away from the team facility.

"I crossed all the lines, I checked all the boxes, I dotted all my Is, then to find out that I had to sit out," Newton said in a YouTube interview with his father, Cecil.

"... That's when I kind of felt bamboozled, because I'm like, 'Y'all told me to go!'"

Curran: How Mac Jones beat out Newton for starting job

The Patriots indeed gave Newton permission to travel to Atlanta to seek a second opinion on his foot. So, where was the disconnect? Head coach Bill Belichick was asked about Newton's comments Monday morning on WEEI's "The Greg Hill Show."

"Yeah, I think we’ve already covered all that," Belichick said.

"Look, I have nothing but respect for Cam and everything he did here. We said that after he was released and my feelings toward Cam have not changed."

Shortly after the Patriots surprisingly released Newton on Aug. 31, Belichick praised Newton's work ethic, noting that the 32-year-old QB gave the team "everything (he had)." 

But New England felt confident enough in rookie Mac Jones to not keep Newton on the roster, a decision that appeared to be validated by Jones' strong effort in his NFL debut Sunday.


Newton is still a free agent following his release, and while Belichick respects the veteran quarterback, you probably won't hear him say much more about his erstwhile starter.