The move sets the stage for rookie QB Mac Jones, who officially becomes the starter in New England, and the heir apparent to Tom Brady. It also came as something of a surprise. The general thinking was that Newton would start the season as New England’s QB1, and Jones—who by all accounts has been mighty impressive in training camp—would assume the role later in the season. Clearly Bill Belichick had other plans in mind.
Jones was drafted in the first round from Alabama, and has looked the part throughout the preaseasin. He was humble about his abilities on the field after Sunday’s win against the New York Giants.
“I’ve gotten a lot of opportunities to play and I can improve on everything I want to improve on. So I think just learning from [Brian] Hoyer, Cam, Jarrett [Stidham], any one I can, and listening to Josh [McDaniels] and his coaching, there’s a lot of work to do but I think I’ve made progress,” Jones said. “But, honestly, the only thing that matters is today.”
Newton meanwhile, signed a one-year deal with the Patriots in March, worth, at most, $13.6 million, with $3.5 million fully guaranteed. He released the following message after his release:
Newton has come under fire recently for his stance against vaccines, which some people speculated played a part in his release.
Here’s how people reacted to the news.