The 2017 NFL Draft has come and gone, and Malcolm Butler remains a member of the New England Patriots.
It’s possible the All-Pro cornerback still could be traded before, or during, the 2017 season, but the chances of Butler sticking around certainly have increased.
The Patriots arguably now have the best and deepest secondary in the NFL with Butler, Stephon Gilmore and Eric Rowe at cornerback and Devin McCourty, Patrick Chung and Duron Harmon at safety.
“It’s going to be fun,” Gilmore said Thursday about playing with Butler. “I know he’s a talented player but I just try to stay in my lane and handle the things I can handle. It’s a competitive group so I’m looking forward to it.”
Gilmore isn’t ready to crown the Patriots’ secondary as the best in the NFL, however.
“We just want to be the best team that we can be,” Gilmore said. “Whatever that goal is, whatever we’ve got to do to win games, that’s what we’ve got to do to help this team win.”
Gilmore, who came to the Patriots as an unrestricted free agent from the Buffalo Bills, should have an easy time acclimating to his new team since he’s the only newcomer projected to start on the Patriots’ defense. McCourty and Chung each have seven years of experience in the Patriots’ secondary, Harmon has been around since 2013 and Butler signed in 2014.
“They definitely help, those guys,” Gilmore said. “(They’re) veteran guys who’ve been around and played a long time. When you have those type of guys back there it allows you to come in and ask questions and try to do the best you can to communicate with them and make plays.”
Thumbnail photo via Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports Images