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Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers, Los Angeles Chargers. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Rizzla discusses Cam Newton signing with the New England Patriots, and examines the fantasy impact on Newton and the other Patriots skill players.

Former league MVP Cam Newton has finally found a new home, and it is with the New England Patriots.

Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network was the first to report the news. The deal is for one year, and is worth up to $7.5 million with incentives.

For the #Patriots and Cam Newton, who have quietly worked on this recently, it’s a 1-year deal worth up to $7.5M, source said. https://t.co/YSHLAcRupb

— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) June 29, 2020

This is monumental news for both the New England Patriots and for fantasy managers. Cam Newton instantly transforms the Patriots from a team in the Trevor Lawrence ‘race’, to a team that is now a favorite to make the expanded postseason. New England played the waiting game to masterful results, and have signed the former MVP for less than half of what the Chicago Bears will be paying Nick Foles to compete for the starting job in the Windy City. The nature of the deal suggests Cam will have to prove he’s healthy, but if he is the Patriots got a steal.

In one fell swoop, the New England Patriots have transformed themselves from a team that may have struggled to win four games this season, to a team who has a legitimate chance at winning 10 or more games. They should be locked in a battle for the AFC East crown for most of the season, and their head to head battles with the Buffalo Bills now promise to feature playoff intensity.

Undoubtedly an upgrade on backup types Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer, it is fair to wonder if Cam Newton is also an upgrade on the 2019 version of Tom Brady. The expanded playoffs should allow the Patriots to make the playoffs even if they don’t win their division, and should be a tough out when they turn on playoff mode. Perfectly suited to ground and pound and rely on their defense, the New England Patriots are a much better team now that they have a weapon like Cam Newton at quarterback.

Next: How does this affect the Patriots fantasy landscape?

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High School Sports | Preseason all-Bay Area News Group high school football 2022: RBs/Athletes

PRESEASON ALL-BAY AREA NEWS GROUP RUNNING BACKS

(Listed in alphabetical order)

Monte Beam, Concord, 5-9, 170, junior

Beam was a consistent presence on a Concord team in desperate need of it, running for 797 yards and eight touchdowns last season. He reportedly has improved both his strength and speed this offseason.

Charles Brown Jr., Antioch, 5-7, 155, senior

The Pittsburg transfer was a terror next to Jaden Rashada last season, running for 14 touchdowns and 992 yards. Brown Jr. will now be counted on to provide similar production at Pittsburg’s rival, Antioch, which is aiming for the league crown.

Salvador Espinoza, Lincoln-San Jose, 5-7, 155, senior

The baseball standout for Lincoln is also one of the best runners in the South Bay. Espinoza ran for 827 yards and seven touchdowns in nine games. Was named the BVAL Mt. Hamilton’s most valuable running back.

Jordan Fuentes, Live Oak, 5-11, 160, senior

Even though he battled injuries last season, Fuentes was still prolific on the ground for Live Oak. In eight games played, he ran for 623 yards and four touchdowns.

Charles Greer, De La Salle, 5-10, 180, senior

The Fresno State commit ran for 1,258 yards and 17 touchdowns on only 149 carries in 2021, and he caught three more touchdowns on top of that. De La Salle coach Justin Alumbaugh said Greer has put on weight and strength and “looks to carry the load” in 2022.

Jacob Lang, Westmont, 5-9, 180, senior

Lang earned his first-team all-league selection last season with a highly-efficient year. He ran for 1,107 yards and 12 touchdowns and did it on only 104 carries. Could crush those numbers with a larger workload.

Andrew Latu, Sacred Heart Prep, 5-11, 205, senior

Latu is a bowling ball near the goal line, as evidenced by his 13 rushing touchdowns and one touchdown reception last season. He’s far from just a goal-line merchant, though. Ran for 729 yards with a long run of 70 yards last season.

Greyson Mobley, Monta Vista, 6-0, 205, senior

Mobley has a good arm and threw for two touchdowns when pressed into quarterback duty, but his true talents lie as a runner. He ran for 1,133 yards and 11 touchdowns as Monta Vista’s workhorse on the ground. Was the team’s MVP and first-team all-league.

Ivan Nisa, Aragon, 6-3, 170, junior

Ivan Nisa was one of the integral pieces of an Aragon team that won a CCS championship, a game in which he ran for 165 yards and a touchdown. The shooting-guard sized running back ran for 892 yards and 13 touchdowns as a sophomore.

Andrew Palacios, Wilcox, 5-8, 165, senior

As a three-year starter for Wilcox, Palacios has a track record of excellence. He also has track speed, having run for 1,042 yards and 12 touchdowns for last year’s 2-A state championship runner-up.

Ben Pfaff, Bellarmine, 5-11, 190, senior

Pfaff was an easy choice for the 2021 all-WCAL team after he rushed for almost 1,000 yards and punched in 16 touchdowns. His coach, Jalal Beauchman, described Pfaff as “a hard runner with breakaway speed.”

Devon Rivers, Heritage, 5-7, 170, senior

As the son of former Fresno State star and NFL running back Ron Rivers and brother of Fresno State’s all-time TD leader, Ronnie Rivers, Devon is following in the family’s footsteps. Devon juked and sprinted to 1,175 yards and 15 touchdowns during his junior season, and is committed to play at Fresno State.

Shayan Shariat, Leigh, 6-1, 220, junior

The team’s sophomore of the year is a hammer of a back who uses his power to run through defenses. Shariat ran for 846 yards on 8.2 yards per carry during his sophomore season and this year should have a chance at cracking double-digit TDs.

Javian Thomas, McClymonds, 5-10, 170, class

Thomas was the engine of a California state champion, running for 20 touchdowns and around 1,500 yards. He combined with fellow all-Bay Area News Group teammate Amir Gobar to form the best backfield in the OAL.

Makoa Ah Tou, Hillsdale, 5-10, 200, senior

Ah Tou ran for 721 yards and eight touchdowns last season as part of a backfield collective. Hillsdale coach Mike Parodi said, “He will look to get many carries this fall.”

Jeaden Underwood, The King’s Academy, 5-7, 180, junior

Underwood was a revelation as a sophomore. He ran for 1,353 yards and chipped in 16 touchdowns on the ground and caught one more touchdown through the air. Underwood also flashed in the return game, taking back two kickoffs for a total of 105 yards.

ATHLETES

Anthony Alonzo, Oakland Tech, 5-11, 180, senior

The three-star recruit has an offer from Grambling and should receive many more in the months to come. Alonzo reads his blocks, then explodes through openings for long gains. Will compete with Javian Thomas for the mantle as the top back in the Oakland Athletic League.

Jabari Mann, Serra, 5-11, 180, junior

The junior ran seven times for 58 yards and caught one pass for a 47-yard touchdown last season, totals he could dwarf in a bigger role this fall. With the departure of Hassan Mahasin to San Diego State, Mann could get a shot to fill Mahasin’s shoes as a do-everything playmaker.

A’Jhuan Parker, Alameda, 6-0, 165, junior

Parker led the team in tackles and rushing last season as a sophomore. Alameda coach Robin Morris said the runner has “developed in the offseason” and that a more mature Parker is ready for another big season.

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Deondre Prim, Kennedy-Richmond, 5-10, 175, junior

Prim should burn defenses from multiple spots, one of those being as a runner out of the backfield and on sweeps. Coach Greg Marshall called Prim one of the best players he has had in eight years. “He’s a freak athlete (and) is a stud for us,” the coach added.

Herschel Turner, Freedom, 5-9, 195, junior

Freedom coach Zach Sims called Turner the best player to come through the Oakley school since current NFL pro-bowler Joe Mixon about a decade ago, and that Turner has put on 20 pounds to handle the transition to running back. Last season, Turner caught 75 passes and seven touchdowns and ran for five scores and 450 yards on the ground.

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