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Cam Newton signing will be ‘great test’ for Patriots’ Jarrett Stidham

Cam Newton, Jarrett Stidham, Patriots

The New England Patriots signing Cam Newton has caused some uncertainty surrounding the potential of Jarrett Stidham. Despite Newton being favored to start, NFL Media’s Mike Giardi believes the Newton signing will be a ‘great test’ for Stidham.

“To me, this is a great test for Stidham because look, when he comes in last year he’s not beating out Tom Brady, we all know he’s not beating out Tom Brady. So you learn, you observe, he got more first-team reps because Brady didn’t always practice, all those sorts of things, but there was no competition there — I guess competition with Brian Hoyer, but let’s face it, Brian is what he is. This is sort of a competition.

Before the addition of Newton, it was assumed that the Patriots would give Stidham the first crack at replacing Tom Brady.

However, there’s no doubt that the former NFL MVP muddies Stidham’s chance of being the starter for the Patriots in Week 1. Nonetheless, Giardi wants to see Stidham prove he can win the starting job over Newton.

“This forces a little bit of, ‘OK, show me something now because you thought maybe you were going to be the guy and now we are telling you Cam Newton is here, so put your chips on the table. Show me what you got. Try to convince the teammates that maybe he gravitational pull is over there, but I am the better quarterback now.’ That I think is probably what they are hoping for, some sort of buck up from Stidham saying, ‘No, no. This is my team.’ I think that will be the interesting thing if and when we get to camp.”

Heading into Patriots training camp, Newton is at a bit of a disadvantage due to the implications of COVID-19. On the other hand, Stidham is going to have to try and pry the starting job away from the All-Pro quarterback.