For the second consecutive offseason, Brian Flores and the Dolphins have pried a defensive player away from New England. This time, it’s Adam Butler.
Butler is set to sign with Miami in free agency, as first reported by NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport on Wednesday, the first official day of the new league year. Butler’s reported deal is for two years with a maximum value of $9.5 million.
Flores served on the Patriots’ coaching staff for Butler’s first two seasons in Foxboro. The 26-year-old immediately fills a void on the Dolphins’ defensive line left behind by Davon Godchaux, who reportedly agreed to sign with New England on the first day of the NFL’s legal tampering period.
Undrafted out of Vanderbilt in 2017, Butler played in all but one game over the course of his first four NFL seasons. The lone missed contest occurred this past season as Butler nursed a shoulder injury, but he turned in the best stretch of his career to date upon returning. Butler finished the 2020 campaign with 34 total tackles — six for loss — and four sacks.
Defensive tackle remains a relative area of need for the Patriots even after the reported signings of Godchaux and Henry Anderson. Lawrence Guy, a stalwart along New England’s front seven over the past four seasons, remains an unrestricted free agency as of Wednesday afternoon.