The Cam Newton 2020 experiment hasn't been a complete failure or anything — people around the team strongly believe, as was the case last year with Tom Brady, that the quarterback would look a hell of a lot better with a) a functional starting NFL tight end, and b) any receivers that would be above a No. 3 any place else — but we pretty much know what Newton is at this point.
He's an average passing quarterback that no longer has the same running prowess to offset that, and his feel for the position is limited, and hasn't been helped by his lack of familiarity with the scheme thanks to a limited offseason.
So, basically, Newton is an average starting quarterback, one who was so bad in last week's win over the Cardinals that the Patriots had to figure out how to win the game — or at least get it to overtime — while avoiding Newton.
So the prospect of playing JarrettStidham, or at least getting a good look at what he could do with a full week of reps, has gained some steam as the Patriots barely cling to playoff hopes.
When Newton was listed on this week's injury report for the first time— he was limited in practice with an abdominal injury — there's some thought this could be an opening for Stidham.