Cam Newton plans to address his future in the NFL on Friday.
Newton said in an Instagram teaser on Wednesday he has "a lot of things I need to get off my chest." However, he added his forthcoming video "is not a retirement speech," and he believes he has "a lot of football still in me."
As they made their final roster cuts, the New England Patriots released Newton ahead of the regular season. Although New England selected Mac Jones in the first round of the 2021 draft, the move was nonetheless surprising because of Newton's track record.
The three-time Pro Bowler missed four days of practice in August because of the NFL's COVID-19 health and safety protocols, but head coach Bill Belichick said Newton's vaccination status didn't influence the team's decision.
The 2015 MVP only turned 32 in May, so retirement never seemed a plausible outcome. But his release from the Patriots underscored the general uncertainty about his value.
In 15 games in 2020, he threw for 2,657 yards, eight touchdowns and 10 interceptions while running for 592 yards and 12 scores. He later said that testing positive for COVID-19 in the middle of the year threw off his general rhythm when he returned to the field.
Still, his production was a clear level below what he delivered during his best years with the Carolina Panthers.
ProFootballTalk's Mike Florio spoke with one source Sunday who raised concerns about Newton's injury history and "a belief that he’s not throwing the ball very well." He underwent shoulder surgery in January 2019 and subsequently made just two appearances before having surgery on his left foot.
Based on his comments Wednesday, Newton has every intention to sign with another team this season. To make that happen, though, he might have to settle for being a backup for the first time in his career.