New England Patriots quarterback Cam Newton didn't shy away from touching upon the importance of Sunday's showdown with division foes and leaders the Buffalo Bills.
"This is a must-win for us, and I'm going to control the things that I can control," Newton said of his 2-4 Patriots facing the 5-2 Bills, according to Mike Reiss of ESPN. "I have two or three more days to prepare and that's what I plan on doing."
The Patriots dropped their third straight game via last Sunday's 33-6 blowout loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Newton missed the Oct. 5 defeat to the Kansas City Chiefs after he tested positive for COVID-19 but has acknowledged his poor play on multiple occasions during this slump. The one-time NFL Most Valuable Player performed so poorly against San Francisco (9-of-15 with 98 passing yards and three interceptions), head coach Bill Belichick benched him in favor of Jarrett Stidham.
Newton spoke candidly about what he's learned in his first year with a franchise that has won six Super Bowl championships during the 2000s.
"Losing is not acceptable in this locker room, in this county, in this state, in this area, in this region," he said. "So, Cameron Newton, you need to pick your expletive up. That's what I've learned."
"When you're trash, and when you put on performances like I did the past week, anybody can start talking to you -- from the whisperers and the chirpers.
"When you play the way I played on Sunday, terrible, you open the doors. This whole week, starting on Sunday from the first quarter, was a humbling experience. Getting the tap on the shoulder [to come out of the game] was a humbling experience. I'm not used to that. Now I'm at a crossroads."
According to ESPN Stats & Information, Newton posted the NFL's worst Total QBR (15.3) among eligible signal-callers in his last three starts.