No one really knows what the Patriots will do at the quarterback position in 2021.
ESPN's Mike Reiss joined Dale & Keefe Friday and said he wouldn't rule out Cam Newton returning, but if that is the case it would likely be in addition to someone else.
“We don’t know how all of this is going to unfold, and if you do bring him back, maybe it is a Cam and situation," he said. "For example, going back to the [Marcus] Mariota possibility, like how would you feel about Mariota and Cam? … I wouldn’t close the door just yet [on Newton returning] until we know what the other dominos are, that are out there and available to them.
"I think the concern is the functional passing game -- how much of that was Cam versus how much was around him? You have to admit they didn’t put him in the best position to succeed with what was around him, but part of that was him, too. He said as much himself, right? That’s maybe the tricky part when you are navigating that one.”
Reiss acknowledged he is "warming up" to the Mariota possibility.
“I like the possibility, or I am warming up to the possibility, of someone like Marcus Mariota," he said. "The Raiders backup quarterback, which they might not keep because they are in a little bit of a salary cap crunch. They need to improve their defense. He’s on the books for $10.5 million. I am warming up to the idea of maybe you just take care of that right now. Say hey, ‘what would it take? A fifth-round pick? A sixth-round pick? You might even cut him. Let’s take him and say we can move forward with him and then it still gives us flexibility whether he is the guy or not. At least we have a guy who has 61 career starts and gives us a chance at the functional passing game and maybe he ends up being the answer down the line, but if he isn’t we still have flexibility with all that cap space to go in a different direction.’”
Free agency will begin in mid-March.