The Panthers announced on Tuesday that they're giving Cam Newton permission to seek a trade. Reports trickled out just before they acknowledged it, yes, but the story is right there at the top of their team website. Something is going to happen soon.
"We have been working with Cam and his agent to find the best fit for him moving forward and he will always be a Carolina Panther in our hearts," GM Marty Hurney said.
Newton, meanwhile, is making sure that the narrative is clear. The Panthers "forced" him to request a trade.
In an offseason that's going to include new homes for Tom Brady, Philip Rivers and other high-profile passers, Newton will make a wild handful of days that much crazier.
There are plenty of places that could use the former MVP, too, even if he's coming off a season where he played in just a couple of games and eventually landed on injured reserve.
As of now, the Bucs and Chargers are two organizations in need of a starter. Plus, whoever is considering drafting a passer in April may instead choose to try and acquire Newton.
And, naturally, because of Newton's connection to head coach Ron Rivera, the Redskins will come up.
The QB and coach started together in Carolina in 2011 and essentially were the team's two leaders for nine years. Rivera let Newton take over right away, helped him grow immensely and went to a Super Bowl with him.
These aren't just two guys who overlapped for a little. They're two guys who owe a ton of their success to one another and spent almost a decade side-by-side.
Now, considering that there's a new regime in charge of the Panthers and Newton's recent injuries, it's hard to imagine him costing too much in a trade. The Redskins could likely pull it off if they want to — remember, Rivera wants to bring in competition for Dwayne Haskins, and Newton would no doubt accomplish that — but Washington isn't exactly swimming in draft capital, either.
Plus, Newton would come with an expensive contract. The Burgundy and Gold would have to take on his money while still paying for Alex Smith and Haskins.
So, yes, a trade for Newton would likely require giving up some picks (further limiting Rivera's ability to rebuild his new franchise) as well as absorbing a large cap hit. It'd be a complicated, course-changing endeavor.
That said, Rivera has already brought in so many former Panthers to fortify the Redskins' front office and coaching staff. Bringing in Newton, though, would easily be his biggest move yet. Let's see how bold he wants to be.
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