Where Patriots Stand With Salary Cap Space After Cam Newton Signing
The New England Patriots didn't have much cap space before they signed quarterback Cam Newton to a one-year, $7.5 million contract on June 28. Now they have even less.
New England had $650,989 in available cap space ahead of the Cam Newton signing, according to the NFLPA salary cap report. After they signed the former MVP quarterback, they now have $263,489, per Boston Sports Journal's Miguel Benzan.
Newton's contract with New England is for one year, with a minimum base salary of $1.05 million. He received a $550,000 signing bonus, and can earn up to $6.45 million in incentives and per-game roster bonuses, according to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports. Giving Newton a contract with a signing bonus, per-game roster bonuses and playing-time incentives kept is cap number low, which is why the team was only docked a little under $400,000 in cap space.
It was also reported on by La Canfora that Newton's contract does not include a provision that prevents the Patriots from franchise tagging him in 2021. So not only did the Patriots manage to sign the former MVP at a low cost this offseason, but if Newton plays well next season New England can prevent him from going elsewhere next year by tagging him. Doing that would retain Newton at a rate that would likely be cheaper than his rate on the open market.
Signing a modest contract seemed like an odd move for a player that, when healthy, is still one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL. But Newton is seemingly looking to prove he is still capable of being Superman, which can help him earn a multi-year contract in 2021, unless New England tags him.