Tuesday morning, the Carolina Panthers revealed that they have given quarterback Cam Newton and his agent permission to seek a trade. The team's statement said that general manager Marty Hurney had met with Newton to discuss the plan and that they would work to find the "best fit" for him. According to the former first overall pick, however, this was not something he asked for.
Newton responded to the Panthers on Tuesday and called out the team for their "wordplay." As he wrote in his comment, he never asked for a trade. Newton also said that the Panthers "forced him" into this. This follows a previous post on Instagram in which the 2015 NFL MVP shouted that "all I want is a little commitment, and you can't give me that?" while planking.
While Newton has expressed his desire to remain with the team throughout his recovery from a Lisfranc injury, there have been rumors about his future. Up to 10 teams have reportedly been linked to Newton as possible trade partners.
"One of the distinct pleasures of my career was selecting Cam with the first pick in the 2011 draft," Hurney said in a statement on Tuesday. "Every year difficult decisions are made and they are never easy. We have been working with Cam and his agent to find the best fit for him moving forward and he will always be a Carolina Panther in our hearts."
However, the questions about a potential move were seemingly put to rest during the NFL Scouting Combine when a report surfaced that the Panthers planned to move forward with Newton on the roster. Although team owner David Tepper said that the top concern is whether or not Newton is healthy entering the new league year.
With his spot on the roster no longer guaranteed, Newton will now explore his potential trade market, albeit reluctantly. He will turn 31 prior to the 2020 season and will be looking to prove that he is fully healthy. Newton has suffered multiple injuries since 2016 and has had surgeries on his throwing shoulder and a foot procedure.
Newton is the 2015 league MVP and a three-time Pro Bowl selection. He is the franchise's all-time leader in completions (2,371), passing yards (29,041), and passing touchdowns (182). Newton also holds the franchise record for career rushing touchdowns (58).