Despite losing five of their last six games with Kyle Allen at the controls, the Carolina Panthers have made the decision to stick with Allen as their long-term quarterback. According to Ian Rapoport, the Panthers intend to trade their previous starting quarterback, Cam Newton, this offseason. Newton is coming off an injury to his left foot, which he fractured in the second week of this season.
After this season, Newton has one year remaining on his current contract, which will count $21.1 million against the salary cap. So where will Newton land? These seem like the most likely spots.
1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
While Jameis Winston may be putting up the best numbers of his career in 2019, it still won't be enough for the Buccaneers to reach the playoffs, or for him to erase the stigma that he is not the right quarterback to lead Tampa Bay. Assuming Bruce Arians moves on from Winston, the time might be right for a quick fix for the struggling Bucs, and while they're not good enough for the postseason, they're too good to get Joe Burrow or (possibly) Tua Tagovailoa in the draft.
2. Chicago Bears
A month ago, Ian Rapoport reported that the Chicago Bears were interested in making an aggressive move for Newton. Of course, at the time, Mitch Trubisky was struggling. He later tweaked his hip and it appeared the Bears were just about ready to give up on him. Since then, the team has put their full confidence behind him and he has put together two consecutive solid performances, and the Bears are solidly in the playoff chase once again. Still, things could go wrong for both Trubisky and the Bears with one month to go in the season, and they are still a candidate for Newton.
3. Los Angeles Chargers
This has been a rough season for Philip Rivers. The 38-year-old has struggled and his frustration with himself and his team is apparent in his body language every week. While the Chargers have a capable backup in Tyrod Taylor, a trade option like Cam Newton doesn't come around very often. If all goes well, a healthy and productive Newton could be the perfect ingredient to entice fans to start rooting for the Chargers and not ignoring them.