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“Lines of communication” remain open between Cam Newton, Panthers

Panthers GM Scott Fitterer sits down with Mike Florio to talk about drafting Ikem Ekwonu sixth overall in the 2022 NFL Draft, a Cam Newton reunion and whether Sam Darnold or Matt Corral will start at QB next season.

In late March, Panthers G.M. Scott Fitterer said the door remains open on the team potentially re-signing quarterback Cam Newton. In a Wednesday visit to #PFTPM, Fitterer reiterated that Newton could return.

“I think we’re still having thoughts,” Fitterer said. “We have to see how this works out here throughout the spring. I just happened to be up at the [Kentucky] Derby last weekend and Cam was up there. We’re texting a little bit. The lines of communication are open. I know Coach Rhule has spoken with him. We are going to have a discussion at some point but we’re just not quite there yet, but we’ll see how it goes. The more competition we have at that position the better.”

Newton energized the team when he returned to the Panthers during the 2021 season. Some wonder whether he can be anything but a team’s starter, given his larger-than-life presence and personality.

“I think that mindset is he’s always going to compete to start,” Fitterer said. “I mean that’s just the competitor that he is. The one thing I learned about him is how unselfish he is and what a team guy he is. I had this perception from the outside coming in here who I thought he was. He was one of the hardest workers on our team. He’s a leader. He took the young guys under his wing. They do look up to him naturally. He does have that presence, but he’s a team-first guy. He’s a competitor, but he’s a team-first guy so we have no problem bringing him in.”

The decision apparently will hinge on what they see from the guys they have. And possibly on whether failed efforts to acquire Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield become resuscitated.