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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Malcolm Butler ‘without a doubt’ wants to remain with Patriots in 2018

Malcolm Butler

Malcolm Butler was hoping for a long-term contract extension last offseason, and it seemed like a virtual certainty that 2017 would be his last season with the Patriots when he was forced to play under the restricted free agent tender and New England signed Stephon Gilmore to a massive contract. Has anything changed in the past nine months or so?

Butler is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent next month, and he was reminded by reporters on Wednesday that the Super Bowl could be his last game with the Patriots. The star cornerback said he “without a doubt” wants to return to New England next season, according to Mark Daniels of the Providence Journal.

But when pressed further about his future, Butler insisted he is only thinking about Sunday.

“No, I’m not looking at it like, I’m just looking at it like I’ve got a great opportunity to play in another Super Bowl,” he said. “And I just want to get this win and just enjoy it with my teammates and whatever happens, happens. Whatever is going to happen in your life is going to happen. You don’t know what’s going to happen, so you can’t even stress yourself about it. I’m just living in the moment, man. A great moment.”

Butler has had a down season, and that may actually give him a better chance to re-sign with the Patriots. New England has already committed $13 million per year to Stephon Gilmore and rarely shells out a ton of money for defensive backs, but the price to sign Butler long-term may have come down with the way he played in 2017.

That being said, it wasn’t long ago that Butler seemingly took a shot at his coaches on social media. There were also reports over the summer that he was “badly” hoping to be traded to the Saints, so you have to wonder if a divorce is inevitable.

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