Nearly two weeks ago, Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report turned heads when he revealed that possibly 10 teams are interested in trading for Cam Newton. Now he is adding more belief that teams could be in pursuit of the former first-overall pick. According to another article released on Tuesday, front offices around the league are "highly interested" in a trade for Newton.
This information came to light after Freeman spoke with three unnamed team executives about potential trades that could be taking place prior to the Oct. 29 deadline. What he learned is that the 2015 MVP in Newton is someone that draws considerable interest, but is unlikely to be sent packing to another team.
Yes, he's struggled with injuries the past few seasons, but I can tell you for certain that teams are highly interested in him. Still, the former MVP is revered inside the organization, and his contract isn't trade-friendly.
Considering how the Panthers feel about Newton, Freeman believes that a potential trade only has a five percent chance of happening. Although the team could potentially change their viewpoint based on how backup Kyle Allen performs against the San Francisco 49ers, as well as any offers that are made.
To the point about Newton's contract, he is currently in the midst of a five-year deal worth $103.8 million. This season will see him earn a base salary of $16.2 million, but Newton's deal also includes $9 million in dead cap money. However, in 2020, his salary increases to $18.6 million while the dead cap number drops to $2 million.
Parting ways with someone bearing dead money on the salary cap would mean that one team would receive services and talents of Newton while the Panthers would be stuck with the $11 million in lost money. Although the NFL teams have begun structuring deals in a way that allows them to trade the dead money.
For example, a team in search of a new player could trade for them and absorb the guaranteed money in the deal that previously would have counted against the salary cap space of the original team. Instead, some teams have adopted more an NBA-style structure.
If a team was willing to take on Newton's sizable salary, as well as the $11 million in dead cap/guarantees, it would become far more likely that the deal would be completed.
Until this happens, however, the Panthers will forge ahead with the expectation that their starter will be back on the field in the coming weeks.
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