Who better than offer a window into one of the most interesting relationships in the NFL than Cam Newton?
After signing with the Patriots in July, Newton has experienced head coach Bill Belichick and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels at a level only Tom Brady (and 2008 Matt Cassel) have before as New England's full-time starting quarterback.
During his press conference Thursday, Newton shared his initial observations of McDaniels and Belichick after three months and used an interesting analogy to describe their dynamic.
"It's kind of like a father-son relationship," Newton said. "I know I may be speaking out of turn, but it’s so empowering just to see Coach Belichick and Coach McDaniels’ relationship. I know from what I have seen, Coach Belichick has so much trust in Coach McDaniels and vice versa. Obviously, if you’re going to be under someone’s tutelage, why not it be that specific person in Coach Bill?"
McDaniels and Belichick (who has two actual sons on the Patriots' coaching staff) have worked together for all but three of the last 20 years. They've had their ups and downs, but the fact that McDaniels is still in New England despite nearly taking multiple head coaching gigs over the last few years suggests he values his bond with Belichick.
Newton played for four different offensive coordinators during his nine seasons with the Carolina Panthers, but he seems to be a big fan of McDaniels, whom Newton believes is similar to his "father" figure in some respects.
"Josh is a person who really pays attention to the details and tries to get that added incentive out of a player, performance-wise as much as he can," Newton said.
"He stays on each and every person. The way he coaches me is the same way he coaches Doughboy [N’Keal Harry], Hoyster [Brian Hoyer] and everybody else. That’s what you can love and respect about him."