Originally Posted by Dutchrudder
Newton wasn't just handed the job, he was the backup for Rashad Butler and competed with him in camp, but Butler went on IR. When you lose a starter, it's not uncommon to have a less experienced backup take over. And it's not like the team didn't try to address the position further, they picked up Ryan Harris mid-season and worked him into the RT rotation. Harris had a lot of injury issues though, and I think that's why he was limited in his play.
Let's not pretend Kubiak did nothing to address the position though, and he certainly can't foresee Butler's injury. Cutting Winston hurt the team for sure, but it was a calculated risk that didn't go our way.
Newton was in a very tight competition w/ Butler & then eventually secured the job due to injury. In all honesty, even had Butler remained healthy it looked as if Newton was winning the spot & both did look rough in the preseason. That being said, Newton was given the job despite his lack of experience & suspect play. As you mentioned, it took until midseason before they even addressed the issue that seemed to be developing early in the season. Newton's play was suspect from day one & there was no backup plan. That's on Kubiak & Smith imo. The faith in Newton's development did not quite pan out as quickly or as well as they had hoped, but that's what happens when you choose to go into a season w/ only 1 plan after an injury takes place & essentially hand a job over to a 1st time starter. Which is exactly what happened. If it was a true concern then it wouldve been addressed as soon as Butler went down as opposed to waiting until Newton faltered imo.