Ever since the Gilmore signing, Malcolm Butler has been trying to get out of New England unless the Patriots are willing to give him the same contract Gilmore got. Yesterday Butler visited the Saints and no deal was worked out; but they feel confident that they will get a deal done.
This story has many Patriots fans upset and “bashing” Butler for wanting to leave the Patriots for “money” rather than “championships”. That’s who we are as a fan base though; care more about championships than we do about money. We sign players for dirt cheap and win a championship with them. If they want to stay then we work out a deal, if they want more money than what their worth then we give em the boot. It’s the Patriot Way.
My personal opinion…I can’t really be mad at Butler at all. Listen, he basically won us a Super Bowl, how could you not love him for that? If he didn’t pick Wilson off, this may of been a different story. Even after the Super Bowl when Revis and Browner left, Butler stepped up and was selected into the Pro Bowl that year; basically making him CB #1 for the Patriots. He came from nothing and made himself a star; working everyday to be the best possible player he can be for this team.
Now he wants out of New England because the Patriots refuse to give him a Gilmore type of deal, and can you really blame him? Sure he’s not Sherman, or Norman, or DRC, or any real shutdown corner like there are in this league. But no doubt he can be a #1 CB in the NFL. He does deserve to be paid like one; and the Patriots refuse to give him that type money, despite having $23 million in cap space. I’m not saying you give him $15 million a year like Gilmore, but maybe around $9-10 million would do just the trick.
This happens with every player who wins a championship too; they get the ring and once they’re a free agent they sign to the highest bidder. Martellus Bennett did it, though he didn’t get a big contract like he thought he might of. Same with Hightower; sure he re-signed with us, but he wanted big money and to be on a team that was a Super Bowl contender. The Saints is a head scratchier, mainly because; A) They’re not even close to being Super Bowl contenders and B) Don’t have a ton of money to give Butler a huge contract. The Saints have a weak defense, which is probably why Butler wants to go there; help rebuild this defense.
If Butler truly wants to leave New England because of Gilmore, that would be very disappointing. Having him and Gilmore on both sides of the field would surely give us the #1 secondary in the NFL. Why the Patriots won’t sign Butler to a contract extension is beyond me; we’ve seen this in the past too with Wes Welker, he wanted a big contract and Belichick let him go to Denver. If it’s about money I don’t why this is a problem for the Patriots; but if something about his game/production or his personality then maybe I could understand. But if the Patriots don’t think that Butler is worthy of a #1 CB contract, I’m sorry but I totally disagree with that. I would say him and McCourty lead that defense; McCourty got paid, so why can’t Butler?
What ever happens in the next few days, I hope the Patriots come to terms with Butler to get him to stay. If Butler goes to New Orleans, I wish him nothing but the best and thank him for helping us win two Super Bowls, especially Super Bowl 49.