One of the biggest offseason storylines for the New England Patriots was the signing of Stephon Gilmore. How did Malcolm Butler feel about the signing?
Coming into the offseason, many believed that one of the things the New England Patriots were going to be doing was either signing Malcolm Butler to a long term deal or trading him. As the offseason has come to an end, neither happened, and Butler will be playing on a one-year deal this season.
While it was surprising to see that Butler didn’t receive an extension this offseason, it was even more shocking to see the Patriots sign Stephon Gilmore to a massive deal. Generally, the Patriots don’t make big splashes like this in free agency. However, they went against the grain a spent a ton of money on Gilmore.
After the signing of Gilmore, many believed that Butler would be mad that Gilmore got the contract that he thought he was going to receive. However, Butler kept rather quiet about the situation when asked by reporters.
“Um, nothing much really,” Butler replied when asked for his initial reaction to the Gilmore deal to Phil Perry of CSNNE.com. “Nothing much really. We got a better player. We got another player. We got another good player on this team. Anything to help the team win, I’m down with.”
Butler went on to praise Gilmore as an excellent player, and one that will help the Patriots in 2017. Unlike Butler, Gilmore is a bigger cornerback, which is the body type that the Patriots do like.
“He brings the size and the coverage skills,” Butler said to Perry. “One of the best guys in the league. Very underrated. come in, head down, working hard. Just trying to build off each other no matter what.”
With the addition of Gilmore, Butler might be asked to play a bit more in the slot. As a smaller cornerback, this is something that Butler should be able to do well.
“Wherever they put me, I’m gonna play that role,” he said to Perry. “I’m ready to play the slot if that’s what it is.”
Since the Patriots have Butler and Gilmore together in the secondary, the should have one of the best units in the NFL. While the Patriots might have the best duo of cornerbacks in the NFL, they also have some talented safeties behind them.
Having one of the best safeties in the NFL in Devin McCourty as well, the Patriots are set up nicely to repeat. In 2016, they had one of the most underrated defenses in the NFL. This season, the unit shouldn’t be taken lightly.