|Image via Google|
Malcolm Butler has been upset with his contract situation for the last calendar year and wants a new deal. But that deal may not be coming from the Patriots.
Butler's agent, Derek Simpson, has begun to try to get his client out of New England by attempting to get offers from other teams. Butler, as we know, is a restricted free agent, so any team who were to sign him would have to give up a first-round draft pick as compensation.
The consensus is Butler wants to be paid the same amount as Stephon Gilmore, who got a five-year, $65 million deal from the Pats. New England still has roughly $30 million in cap space and still have to sign Dont'a Hightower. Theoretically, they could still fit Butler in at the number he wants if they really wanted to.
Assuming they don't do that, though, this situation could become ugly. Butler could always play for the $3.91 million tender placed on him by the team for next season, but one would have to imagine he'd still be unhappy even though it's a big raise from the $600,000 he makes now.
With all of that said, letting Butler go to another team could be a more intriguing option for the Pats because they no longer own a first-round pick in this year's draft. That pick was shipped to New Orleans as part of the Brandin Cooks deal.
According to reports, the Patriots would be okay with getting a first-round pick for Butler now that they have Gilmore and Cooks in the fold. So fans dreaming seeing Butler and Gilmore playing together may unfortunately not come true.
Pats would be cool with getting a 1st rnd pick for Butler (they don't have a 1 or 2) I hear. Butler is telling teams he wants Gilmore $$ ...— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) March 13, 2017
As an aside, I don't think anyone had any idea the Patriots were going to get Gilmore. I was (and still am, at least from a sentimental standpoint) in favor of paying Butler whatever he wants. Good cornerbacks are hard to come by, and Butler is also a proven commodity.
But at the same time, if they were to trade him, I would understand it. Butler has been excellent throughout his time in New England and still has a lot of good years ahead of him. There is little doubt he wouldn't make any team he goes to better.
Follow me on Twitter - @JesseGaunce
For more of my articles, click here.