Cam Newton claims Kirk Cousins has just six games to justify his $180 million contract to the Falcons with Michael Penix Jr. knocking on the door

Newton argued in favor of Kirk Cousins, claiming that the Falcons general manager perhaps made a mistake.

Cam Newton claims Kirk Cousins has just six games to justify his $180 million contract to the Falcons with Michael Penix Jr. knocking on the door

(L) Michael Penix Jr. (R) Kirk Cousins and Cam Newton (Image via IMAGO)

Cam Newton threw caution to Kirk Cousins about the Atlanta Falcons drafting Michael Penix Jr. 8th overall in the 2024 NFL Draft. An Atlanta native, Newton understands the psyche of the fan base like the back of his hand, even though he never played for the Falcons.

Penix’s selection became a massive talking point because it was not only a first-round pick but also a top-10 pick. Several draft analysts projected the Washington quarterback to be a late first-round candidate, but the Falcons surprised everyone, even Newton, who like owner Arthur Blank was scratching his head.

During the recent episode of his ‘4th and 1′ podcast, the 35-year-old announced that general manager Terry Fontenot has created a situation that doesn’t favor cousins. According to him, the four-time Pro Bowler will be judged from the get-go and will only have a handful of games to prove to the fans that he is the No. 1 quarterback for the team.

The co-host of the show ‘Pegg’ asked Newton how many games Kirk Cousins had before Penix replaced him.

He got six games. He was judged to prove himself, and he is going to be judged with those six games. And it's not about wins and losses. This is not the judge I am talking about. I am talking about losing the game. Is he turning the ball over? Is he putting the team in the best situation? Because now we, as coaches [Raheem Morris], can do [way better with Penix].
Cam Newton said

Newton also gave valid reasons as to why Cousins’ life in Atlanta may be numbered.

Cam Newton agreed it was a losing situation for Kirk Cousins

Following the draft’s first day, the media asked Fontenot why Penix was so high up. He cited the Green Bay Packers model of drafting future quarterbacks early. They have been successful with Aaron Rodgers and Jordan Love

Kirk Cousins (Image via IMAGO)

However, Newton argued Cousins and Penix were not in the same boat as Rodgers and Love. When the Packers took the Utah QB, Rodgers was part of the set-up for more than a decade. So he was aware of how everything worked in organizations and was able to relay that to Love.

In the Falcons case, neither Cousins nor Penix are familiar with the franchise or how they conduct plays. The 35-year-old has only been part of the team since March when he signed a four-year, $180 million deal

Kirk Cousins and Michael Penix Jr.
Kirk Cousins and Michael Penix Jr. (Via Imago)

His natural reaction to the deal was one of shock and confusion, like that of the majority of the fan base. Now both have to learn the playbook from scratch, and even though Cousins is a bonified NFL veteran, there’s no guarantee he will be able to pick up the playcalls fast enough to get ahead of the 24-year-old. 

Another key factor that comes into play is that Newton pointed out Cousins’ health. He missed a chunk of 2023 after tearing his ACL. On the other hand, Penix would want to prove himself as quickly as possible. Going by Cam Newton‘s hypothesis, the coaching staff may indeed judge Cousins on performance. If he gets off to a winning start, then there shouldn’t be a set for the rest of the season. However, if they see 1 win in 5 games, then questions will be raised about whether he should start more games or if they should replace him with Michael Penix Jr.

Cousins may have established a rapport with the young locker room of the Falcons, but it only takes one bad game to change that. One just needs to glance at Newton’s former Patriots teammate, Mac Jones, and they will have a clear picture.

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