Josh McDaniels: 'Cam [Newton] certainly is the starter now'


The Patriots quarterback competition is all everyone wants to talk about as the regular season approaches.

Both Cam Newton and Mac Jones had impressive performances in preseason game No. 2 last week in Philadelphia, but there comes a point before the regular season where a decision on a starter needs to be made.

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Speaking on a video conference Sunday, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels was asked if he knows who the starter will be for Week 1 and when a decision would need to be made.

“I know this is going to sound silly, but I haven’t really worried about it," he said. "I think that decision from Bill will be made when the time is right to make it. Cam certainly is the starter now, and he has done a good job. He has gone in there, he played well the other night. He’s practiced well. But, I know those guys are really competing hard and we’re giving them an opportunity to compete and play a lot of football.

“My focus really is on our offense improving and specific to your question, that position in general, I have said it before, like that position to me is obviously extremely valuable to our team. We need to be able to play consistently well. We need to communicate well. We need to make good decisions. We need to throw the ball accurately. We need to protect the football and not give it away. To me, I look at those guys in the same light in regards to what we’re trying to accomplish. Ultimately, when any decision is made based on who is going to play more or less on our team, those decisions will be made when the time is right and we’re going to go forward and try and play the best we can.

“I am very pleased with the effort that we’re putting in at the quarterback position, the improvements we’re making and the way that we’re attempting to run the offense. Everything isn’t perfect. We still have a long way to go and things we can work on and improve and make better, but I think the desire to do it, the way we want to do it to the standard that we’re trying to hold them to I think is right where we want it to be.”

While McDaniels said Newton is the starter for now, he wouldn't say he's the starter for Week 1, which is an indication the competition between he and Jones is on-going. He did go on to same the quarterbacks room has been very "unselfish" when it comes to making each other better.

And when it comes to potentially having both quarterbacks play a role in the same game, McDaniels said he hasn't thought about it.

“My answer will be the same [as the last time I was asked]. I haven’t thought about it at all," he said. "Honestly, our focus is on trying to get them to do everything that they are practicing or doing in the games to the best of their ability, and seeing them improve and focusing on the things where maybe this is an area we need to get better at.

"I have not stopped for one second to think about how to utilize multiple people in the same game. I am encouraged by all our quarterbacks in terms of the way they are working, some of the things they have been able to do in our competitive practices and some of the things they have done in the preseason games. I am encouraged by that. But, we have a lot of work ahead of us this week, a great opportunity to get better both on our own and against the Giants and then following it up in the game on Sunday night. I am excited to do that and that is where my focus is.”

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