Cam Newton is willing to be the NY Jets backup QB in 2023

NY Jets, Cam Newton
NY Jets, Cam Newton / Jared C. Tilton/GettyImages

The NY Jets have already publicly declared Zach Wilson as their least for now. Despite head coach Robert Saleh's words of affirmation, it wouldn't be a surprise to see the Jets add another non-Aaron Rodgers quarterback this offseason.

Veterans like Teddy Bridgewater, Mason Rudolph, Chase Daniel, Blaine Gabbert, Trevor Siemian, and Josh Johnson remain available, but one notable former MVP recently listed the Jets as a possible landing spot.

Cam Newton posted a video to his YouTube channel on Wednesday in which he insisted he was open to being a backup in the NFL, something he had denied in the past. Newton went on to list 12 quarterbacks he would be open to backup up next season.

Among the likes of Lamar Jackson, Jalen Hurts, Josh Allen, and Deshaun Watson, Newton identified Aaron Rodgers as a quarterback he'd love to play the backup role behind. Would the Jets actually consider signing Newton?

Does Cam Newton make sense as a backup QB for the NY Jets?

At his peak, Newton was one of the best and most dynamic quarterbacks in football. He was named to three Pro Bowls in his first five seasons in the NFL and earned MVP honors en route to leading his Carolina Panthers to a 15-1 record and the Super Bowl in 2015.

Of course, the Cam Newton we've seen in recent years is a shell of his former self. Newton last played in the NFL with the Panthers in 2021, starting five games and finishing with nine total touchdowns (four passing) and five interceptions. He completed under 55 percent of his passes.

Newton sat out of football last year primarily because he was supposedly looking for a starting opportunity. Needless to say, a soon-to-be 34-year-old Newton isn't going to receive any starting job consideration anymore.

He might have something left in him as a veteran backup, however. Teammates have praised Newton's leadership and guidance, both with the Panthers and New England Patriots. He's a good locker-room presence, even if his reputation might garner unnecessary attention.

The Jets should absolutely make a concerted effort to add a veteran backup quarterback and upgrade over Wilson as QB2 this offseason. They need a quarterback who can come in and keep the team afloat if Rodgers misses a few games. Wilson is not that guy, given what we've seen from him to this point.

But is Newton that guy? It's hard to say. While Newton might be an upgrade over Wilson, that's not saying much. We also don't know how much money Newton is asking for. He might be looking for high-end backup money.

If Newton is willing to accept something like a one-year, $2 million contract (average/slightly below-average backup money) to serve as Rodgers' QB2, maybe the Jets could consider it. There might be better, more cost-effective options out there, though.