The New England Patriots were back in the headlines Sunday Night, inking former NFL MVP Cam Newton to an incentive-laden one-year deal. Following the agreement, the public betting lines were quickly shifted.
Newton himself saw his odds cut in both the Comeback Player of the Year and Regular Season MVP awards, while the Patriots overall Super Bowl odds also were increased.
Due to a Pedal Lisfranc Sprain in Newton’s left foot, the 6-foot-5 quarterback only managed to appear in two games for the Carolina Panthers in 2019. Now in New England, Newton saw his chance to win Comeback Player of the Year shorten from +1800 to +340, trailing only Pittsburgh Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Former Patriot tight end Rob Gronkowski, who won the award in 2014, could also become the first player to win the award coming out of retirement.
“Put simply, this indicates that the implied probability increased from 5.26 percent to 22.73 percent,” said Oddschecker Spokesman Pete Watt. “This is in no small part down to the fact that 96% of all bets placed on the market in the last 12 hours have backed Newton.”
Newton could easily be on track to win the Comeback Player of the Year award if he plays like he did prior to his shoulder injury in 2018. In the first eight games of the 2018 season, Newton completed 67.3 percent of his passes for 1,893 yards and 15 touchdowns to just four interceptions (100.8 passer rating). He added 342 rushing yards on 73 carries (4.7 yards per carry) and four touchdowns.
After the Week 10 shoulder injury, Newton completed just 63.4 percent of his passes with just seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. He rushed for only 134 yards on 31 carries (4.3 yards per carry) and no touchdowns in seven games. Newton’s passer rating dropped to 82.1, certainly due to the shoulder injury.
The talent is certainly there for Newton if healthy and if he is able to beat out second-year quarterback Jarrett Stidham, he should have a strong chance to take home this honor.
While Comeback Player of the Year seems in the realm of possibilities for Newton, the MVP award appears a long shot. However, following the announcement, the 2015 MVP saw a notable change in this year’s MVP odds, cut from +8000 (1.23 percent implied chance) to +2500 (3.85 percent chance).
Lastly, the updated Super Bowl odds forecast that the addition of Newton gives the Patriots a stronger chance to win the Lombardi this season. Oddsmakers’ cut the Patriots Super Bowl odds from +2500 to +1600, an increase from 3.85 percent to 5.88 percent.
It will be interesting to watch the quarterback room in Foxboro, as the odds show, a healthy Newton could help make the Patriots a legitimate contender.