Cam Newton Player Props: Analysis and Picks for 2020 Season
The three big-name quarterbacks that found new homes this offseason are Cam Newton (New England Patriots), Tom Brady (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), and Teddy Bridgewater (Carolina Panthers). Each quarterback has to learn new systems and will have to do so having limited contact with new teammates and coaches. Brady, though, did do a fair bit of ignoring the NFLPA’s recommendation to not engage in group workouts.
In this article, we’ll break down Cam Newton player props and then look at a couple of head-to-head props for Newton versus Tom Brady and Teddy Bridgewater.
Cam Newton player props
- Over/under 2,950.5 passing yards
- Over/under 19.5 passing touchdowns
Both of these season-long player props come from DraftKings Sportsbook, where they’ve dedicated a few wagers to Newton and even displayed them in the same sort of exotic, cryptic font that Newton uses when he posts on social media.
In the last four seasons when he started at least 14 games (2015-2018), Newton has averaged 230 passing yards per game. He enters a new offense that was third in neutral game pace last season, meaning that offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels likes a fast-paced offense even in close, tight games.
On the other side of the argument is the fact that Newton’s had very little contact with his receiving corps. Speaking of his receivers, unless N’Keal Harry breaks through in year two, Newton will be left with wide receiver Julian Edelman and running back James White as the only two options with a track record.
I’ll be laying money on the over for Newton’s passing yards prop at DraftKings. I’m also going into the bet assuming that he makes 13 starts. Why 13? There’s no guarantee that Newton wins the starting job out of the gate and I also like to assume that injury could sideline him. I’m making this bet because Newton needs to average 230 yards over 13 games to reach 2,990 yards. If you believe he hits his four-year average (minus 2019) and that he can play at least 13 games, then it’s an easy over.
Newton has thrown an average of 25 touchdowns per season over the last four seasons he’s played at least 14 games. I don’t feel comfortable on either side of the 19.5 passing touchdowns, but if you feel Newton will play 14 games or more, it’s a bet you might want to consider.
Cam Newton vs. Tom Brady
- Passing touchdowns: Brady (-670) vs. Newton (+470)
- Passing yards: Brady (-560) vs. Newton (+400)
Odds as of July 17, 2020, and subject to change.
With 24 passing TDs, Brady dropped to his lowest single-season passing touchdown total since 2006. He averaged 6.8 yards per completion last season, which was the second-lowest total of his career. His receiving options were minimal outside of Edelman (100 catches) and White (72 catches). Now in Tampa Bay, Brady has Chris Godwin, Mike Evans, and the trio of Rob Gronkowski, O.J. Howard, and Cameron Brate at tight end. The Buccaneers also upgraded the offensive line, using the team’s first-round pick on right tackle Tristan Wirfs.
Brady averaged 29.6 passing TDs from 2016-2018 and threw just 24 last season. He also averaged almost 277 passing yards per game the past four seasons, although that average dropped to 253.6 last season.
Both Newton and Brady come into the season with major question marks. Can Brady catch on to the Buccaneers system in a hurry? Does Brady suffer from a noodle arm? Nonetheless, I’ll take Brady throwing for more touchdowns and yards over Newton. Brady is locked in as the starter on day one. He has superior weapons to throw to and his career completion percentage is almost five full points higher than Newton. I’ll take Brady to eclipse Newton in both passing yards and passing touchdowns.
Cam Newton vs. Teddy Bridgewater
- Passing touchdowns: Bridgewater (134) vs. Newton (+110)
- Passing yards: Bridgewater (-167) vs. Newton (+137)
Odds as of July 17, 2020, and subject to change.
Newton versus Bridgewater is a very interesting case study. In six starts with the New Orleans Saints last season, Bridgewater averaged 228 passing yards per game. He completed 67.9% of his passes for 1,384 yards, 9 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions with a 7.1 YPA. Bridgewater has a great group of receivers with Christian McCaffrey, D.J. Moore, Curtis Samuel, Robby Anderson, and emerging tight end Ian Thomas.
The Panthers also have an awful defense on paper after losing Luke Kuechly to retirement and losing pass rushers Bruce Irvin and Mario Addison. If you think that the Panthers will trail a bit this upcoming season, then Bridgewater will have the pass attempts to put him in a better position to throw for more yards than Newton.
Offensive coordinator Joe Brady comes to Carolina after working with Joe Burrow last season at LSU. Brady spent two seasons in the NFL working as an offensive assistant for the Saints, so he’s familiar with Bridgewater. Brady is expected to bring over a high-powered passing offense based on a short passing game.
With the potential of a consistent negative game script due to a bad defense, and because Bridgewater has superior weapons in the passing game as well as being locked into the starting job on day one, I’ll take Bridgewater over Newton in passing yards.
I’m going to fade the Bridgewater-Newton passing TD prop because it’s too risky.
Recap of the picks
- Newton over 2,950 pass yards at DraftKings Sportsbook
- Brady over Newton for passing yards and passing TDs
- Bridgewater over Newton for passing yards
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