Patriots sign Super Bowl hero Butler, may trade him

Rosalie Stanley
April 20, 2017

The Patriots announced that Super Bowl XLIX hero cornerback Malcolm Butler had signed his restricted free agent tender with the deadline coming this Friday.

This removes the opportunity for Butler to sign as a free agent with another organization. The move ensured that New England would receive a first-round pick as compensation if Butler signed an offer sheet with another team and the Patriots chose not to match.

The Patriots could now deal Butler. Signing the $3.91 million tender meant that the team can now talk with interested clubs for a potential trade involving the two-time Super Bowl champion.

The Saints have been linked to Butler throughout the offseason after have him in town for visit in March. They also traded a sixth-round draft pick to Indianapolis for tight end Dwayne Allen and a second-rounder to Carolina for pass rusher Kony Early.

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New Orleans owns two first-round picks - the No. 11 and the No. 32 overall selections, the latter of which was acquired from New England in the Brandin Cooks trade.

Another scenario is holding on to Butler for this season and pairing him with Gilmore in what would be one of the NFL's better 1-2 combinations. Butler was named to the Pro Bowl following the 2015 season.

Butler could remain with the Patriots for one more season before becoming an unrestricted free agent after this, his fourth season.

If the Patriots don't trade Butler, he would likely report once mandatory work starts, to avoid getting fined.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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