The New England Patriots are beginning to prepare for the 2021 NFL season with offseason voluntary workouts, and the team's starting quarterback is among the players taking part.
According to ESPN's Mike Reiss, quarterback Cam Newton is in attendance. The first phase of the offseason workout program includes film review, weight training and more.
These sessions are voluntary, and many of the team's players will not be participating. These players released a statement via the NFLPA last week explaining their decision:
Players from around half of the league's teams released similar statements.
Newton's presence at these workouts is not a surprise. Not only is he one of the hardest working players on the team, he could use the extra reps watching film and building chemistry with his teammates (especially the team's new additions on offense). There's also a financial incentive for Newton to attend because he has a $100,000 workout bonus in his contract.
Newton didn't have much of an offseason with the Patriots last summer after he signed in June and the pandemic limited what players were able to do on the field.
Injuries and a bout with COVID-19 prevented Newton from developing much consistency during the 2020 regular season. He still managed to play 15 of the 16 games, but the offensive production was lacking as New England ranked near the bottom of the league in many passing statistics.