Pats frustrated with Newton over COVID protocol situation?
New England Patriots quarterback Cam Newton Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Cam Newton will miss what many consider to be crucial practice time this week due to a violation of COVID-19 protocols, and there are reportedly some people within the New England Patriots organization who are not happy with the former NFL MVP.

The Patriots announced in a statement on Monday that Newton will have to sit out five days due to a “misunderstanding” with the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols. The quarterback was away from the team on Saturday for a club-approved medical treatment, but he did not follow proper testing protocols. Newton, who is unvaccinated, missed a day of testing even though he got tested away from the Patriots’ facility and tested negative. Daily testing is required for unvaccinated players at an NFL-approved facility.

According to Michael Giardi of NFL Network, there is some internal frustration with the Patriots over the Newton situation. One member of the organization, whom Giardi described as “important,” believes Newton’s absence will open up the door for rookie Mac Jones to win the starting quarterback job.

The Patriots said Newton’s out-of-state medical treatment was approved by the team, so New England should have clearly communicated the protocols to him before he left. If the Pats did not, that is just as much on them as it is Newton. If they did, you can understand why they’d be unhappy with the veteran.

Jones will now likely get most — if not all — of the first-team reps in joint practices with the New York Giants this week. Bill Belichick offered his latest thoughts on the Patriots’ QB competition on Monday, but that was before we knew about Newton being ruled out for several practices. Time will tell if the situation has a significant impact heading into Week 1.

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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