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Cam Newton: “It’s really put-up or shut-up time”

Chris Simms reveals the quarterbacks from his Top 40 QB rankings that he thinks could prove him wrong this coming season.

The Patriots drafted Mac Jones with the 15th pick of this year’s draft, setting him up to become New England’s quarterback of the future.

But in the present, Cam Newton is still the club’s starter — though the clock is clearly ticking on how long that lasts. Newton has said this offseason that Jones was the right pick for New England and the best player available. But with only so many potential starts left for the Patriots, there’s a sense of urgency for Newton’s play entering 2021.

Newton joined ESPN Radio’s Keyshawn, JWill, and Zubin on Thursday and set out what this upcoming season means for him.

“I know who I am,” Newton said, via Mike Reiss of ESPN. “At times, I do remind myself people forget who you are, and what you’ve done. So now I’m in a position where I need to be my best self. It’s really put-up or shut-up time.”

Newton complimented the Patriots, saying the organization “has been impeccable.” He also noted that he’s significantly more comfortable going into his second year with the team, which has value.

"[M]y time there has been everything I could have asked for,” he said. “I guess it’s now time for me to uphold my end of the bargain, through and through.”

Newton completed 66 percent of his passes last year for 2,657 yards with eight touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He also rushed for 592 yards and 12 TDs.

He recently published a video recorded in September of 2020 that noted how much a shoulder injury suffered in 2016 had affected him for years. But the 2015 MVP should be fully good to go when 2021 training camp begins at the end of the month.