Cam Newton among Patriots reporting for voluntary work today

Cam Newton among Patriots reporting for voluntary work today

Players on the Patriots released a statement saying that “many of us” would not participate in voluntary workouts at the team facility in accordance with the recommendations of the NFL players’ union. But the statement was unsigned, and it’s unclear how many Patriots will choose not to participate.

On player who will participate is quarterback Cam Newton.

Newton is “among those leading the charge in attendance” as the Patriots begin their program today with the team facility and weight room open, according to Mike Reiss of ESPN.

It’s easy to see why Newton would want to get to work. His contract ties his pay heavily to incentives that he’ll only reach if he and the team play well. He wants to get a leg up now on earning the starting job and having himself in the best position to play well.

That’s how it will be for many players across the league. Even if they agree in theory with the NFL Players Association that they’re better off staying home, as they did last offseason, the reality is that player who are competing for a roster spot or a starting job want to do everything in their power to impress the coaching staff and have themselves ready for the season. If that means showing up to voluntary work, they’ll show up.