CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - SEPTEMBER 12: Quarterback Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers reacts in the first quarter of the game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Bank of America Stadium on September 12, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

The New England Patriots are signing Cam Newton to a veteran minimum deal and the New York Jets still have to contend with an MVP QB.

The New England Patriots let Tom Brady walk this offseason, and even though Bill Belichick waited a while to find his replacement, he finally found him. The Pats are signing Cam Newton to an “incentive-laden deal” per Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen of ESPN.

Instead of facing Jarrett Stidham two times in 2020, the New York Jets will likely see a former MVP line up under center when they face the Pats. Injuries tanked Newton in Carolina, but if he’s fully healthy, New England’s stranglehold on the AFC East could tighten even further.

After all, Newton is a 31-year-old who, in theory, should have plenty of good years of football in the tank. Of course, the injuries and the many hits Newton has taken over his career should be worrisome for the Pats, but it’s more than worth it to take a chance on his talent.

This move could also give Stidham more time to grow on the sidelines before he eventually takes over the starting job. Could he beat out Newton for the gig this season? Sure, but it’s hard to predict that when we’ve seen so little out of Stidham. Newton, on the other hand, is only five years removed from winning an MVP and taking his team to the Super Bowl.

Again, if he’s healthy, he’ll be the guy the Jets will have to face twice in 2020.

This adds another layer of intrigue to the division for the Jets. When Brady packed his bags and flew south for Tampa Bay, it looked like the division was finally, truly up for grabs. Now? It looks like the Patriots could be reloading for another run at a Super Bowl if everything falls into place (which it always seems to for Belichick).

NY/NJ hoops reporter (NBA/NCAA) & sports betting writer for XL Media. Never had the makings of a varsity athlete.