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Cam Newton injures throwing hand in New England Patriots OTAs

New England Patriots quarterback Cam Newton suffered an injury to his right throwing hand when he appeared to have struck a helmet during organized team activities on Friday.

NFL Network’s Michael Girardi describe in detail what happened regarding Newton’s injury, while his colleague Ian Rapoport provided more specifics as to the severity of the situation:

It looks like Newton escaped a potential disaster, as he’s entering a second straight prove-it year in Foxborough and can ill afford to give up reps as he tries to assert himself as the starting quarterback.

Can Mac Jones take advantage of reps with Cam Newton sidelined?

Newton went 7-8 as a starter last season, but came down with COVID-19 and wasn’t the same after a relatively promising start to 2020. This despite the fact that Newton was learning an entirely new, complex system and had little in the way of dynamic pass-catchers to throw to.

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was aggressive in adding talent to the offense in free agency, but he also made the call to draft Alabama QB Mac Jones at No. 15 overall. It’s the first time Belichick has selected a quarterback in the first round, so Newton is definitely getting pushed this year.

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The hope is that Newton’s bruised hand is OK and this is just a minor setback. However, Jones has a real opportunity to gain ground in the competition with Newton by impressing New England coaches. He’ll likely get all the first-team reps until Newton can return.

Strangely, once upon a time, Tom Brady subbed in for an injured former No. 1 overall pick in Drew Bledsoe, and never looked back, leading the Pats to six Super Bowl wins across two decades. Newton was the first pick in the 2011 draft, and one decade later, Jones might seize the moment and ascend to the top of the depth chart.