Through Michael hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) – Either way, Cam Newton’s numbers as a passer in 2020 are downright lousy.
The 10-year-old veteran ranks 23rd for passing yards, 28th for passer standings (out of 32 qualifying QBs) and 35th for passing touchdowns. His nine interceptions are also tied for seventh in the league.
The only consistent part of Newton’s performance this year has come from his inconsistency. He has as many games (3) with a passer rating of 51.6 or less as there are games with a rating of 100.0 or better. And his most recent outing – a 9-for-18, 84-yard, 2-INT, 23.6 passer performance against the Cardinals – was his worst of the year.
Given those ups and downs, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels was asked directly on Tuesday whether he still has full confidence in Newton’s abilities as the Patriots’ starting quarterback.
“Absolutely,” McDaniels said.
Noting that a functional passing game depends on blocking, road running, cover readings and good practice, McDaniels put some of the responsibility for the top-down performance on his own shoulders.
“Well, the passing game is a function of how a lot of people get it right. I know the quarterback is the centerpiece of the football pitch, but you don’t throw the ball well without everyone doing their jobs properly and putting the players in a position to be successful, ”said McDaniels. “So I just start with me and I just have to try to put the guys in a position where they can go out there and do something, be aggressive, run good roads, figure out what cover is and give opportunities.” at quarterback. find some guys and throw the soccer ball and throw it and catch it.
McDaniels added: “Successful football has never been one man’s job, and it never will be.”
This is of course true. James White admitted he got the wrong read when picking up the blitz on Sunday, leading directly to Newton’s first interception. And the slim talent pool at the wide receiver and tight end has certainly crippled the passing game untold.
Still, Newton got hot and cold all by himself. He was extremely effective in the Patriots’ victories over Baltimore and Miami, and he looked like his MVP in the loss to Seattle. Still, against the Broncos, 49ers and Cardinals, he threw for 339 total yards, with a grisly 37.1 passer rating.
While in-game performance clearly varied, McDaniels credited Newton for being consistent with his everyday approach to practices and boardrooms.
“Cam is pretty consistent. I think he’s also matured and understands that his process every week is the same, and he’s working extremely hard to put himself in a position to be ready to play the best he can. … He is a very good listener, as I have already documented. He listens very well to practice, he takes good notes, he tries to work on the areas of the game that we have touched on and tried to emphasize that we can progress and improve, ”said McDaniels. “He’s pretty consistent as a human being. I think that’s part of what makes him a good leader. He walks into the building every day, he has a positive attitude and a positive mindset. He has good energy. And he’s been there before. He had a day that was great and then he had a day that was less than what he was looking for, and he was able to bounce back and keep moving forward and try to keep playing good football. and help us win. “
While Newton said on Sunday he preferred an ugly win to a pretty loss, McDaniels also reiterated the point.
“The best part about Cam Newton is that the only stat he cares about is the winning column,” McDaniels said. “So we have to try to make improvements where we can, and we will. And I know he will work extremely hard to achieve it. But to be a good leader and a good teammate you have to try to find consistency with your approach, and he does a really good job bringing that to his teammates every day.