The New England Patriots will open their mandatory minicamp on Monday, and one of the players expected to be in attendance is quarterback Cam Newton. As first reported by ESPN Boston’s Mike Reiss, “it wouldn’t be a surprise” if the incumbent starting quarterback was back on the practice fields following his hand injury suffered on June 4.
Newton left the voluntary organized team activity that day after an apparent collision with a teammate’s helmet, and was unable to finish the session. He also was not spotted during the next three OTAs, but head coach Bill Belichick gave an encouraging update during a media conference call last Thursday.
“He’s doing alright. He won’t participate today, but he’s getting better. ... He’s not out there. But I think he’ll be alright,” Belichick said ahead of Thursday’s practice.
While Newton still missed the session that immediately followed these statements, he was back on the field one day later. The former league MVP returned on Friday, and apparently was quite active despite having hurt his throwing hand just one week earlier.
Monday’s first minicamp practice will give us a closer look at the veteran passer. The session will be open to select members of the media again, and all eyes will be on Newton’s right hand and the workload he will get. Before his injury during the sixth OTA practice, he was the number one quarterback up in all drills.
When he was out, the other three passers saw an uptick in reps. Third-year man Jarrett Stidham and veteran Brian Hoyer took the majority of snaps in team drills during the open session last Thursday, with first-round rookie Mac Jones seeing limited action. Things can always change, however, and minicamp will give us a final update before the quarterback group and the rest of the team heads into its summer vacation.