2017 Butler Watch: Love Me Tender

DJnVa

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Knowing that the Pats face some good pass offenses next year, I wondered if the last 6 games might be "easier" for the #2CB then the first 10 games.

Miami-Probably pretty tough assignment
New Orleans- Probably pretty tough assignment
Jets- Probably not bad
Raiders- Probably pretty tough assignment
Steelers- Probably not bad (I am assuming Gilmore would take Brown and Butler would get someone else)
Bucs- Probably not too bad.

So yea, its not like he could miss the murderers row of good offenses and come in for the last 6 games for a cakewalk.
Aside from the fact the schedule isn't out yet, it looks like you rated the Jets and Steelers the same: "probably not bad". That seems...wrong.
 

esfr

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Maybe they would - there is as much if not more indication that it's MB that won't sign that deal.
 

Harry Hooper

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I agree with this, and he has every incentive to be a good soldier again and play to the best of his ability. If he plays 2017 on the tender and plays great, he will get a ton of $$ in free agency next year. If he lets anything affect his play, he risks that.

Edit: I will say, I bet the market speaks and he doesn't get Gilmore money next year. He is 6 months older than Gilmore, which doesn't really matter, but given that he will be a UFA a year later, and probably isn't widely viewed to be as good as Gilmore, I am guessing he ends up disappointed come March 2018. Not Welker level disappointed, but disappointed.

To reprise an earlier post:

It's all fog-of-war reporting but yes presumably he wasn't interested in a multiyear deal along those lines. If he doesn't get a big offer and plays 2017 for about $4 million, he's about $8 million behind what he could have earned over the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
If all goes well for Butler, he closes most, but not all, of that approx. $8 million deficit with the first year of a UFA deal for 2018 season. But he needs to avoid injury, play well in 2017, and have a suitor to pay him say $12+ million per on a multi-year deal.
 

leftfieldlegacy

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Holding out also means hes not practicing for those 10 weeks, or training camp, or preseason. Those 6 games most likely aren't going to be particularly pretty.
Holding out also opens the door for Cyrus Jones. I'm not sure Butler wants to have CJ taking reps with the first team D for all those weeks. I think Jones has the skills to be a good NFL CB and having that important first year under his belt puts him in a good position to exploit an opportunity that a Butler holdout would offer.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I think the last several posts have done a nice job of showing why it would a poor decision on Butler's part to hold out. But we haven't lived his life and we don't know what makes him tick, and pro athletes seem to do puzzling things all the time.

I'm comforted by the fact that his agent has about 117,300 reasons to get Butler to sign the tender and play if something else doesn't work out before the draft. And given the salary Butler has made to date, it's hard to imagine that he would really turn his back on $230,000 pay checks every week of the year. The first one, maybe is easier, but they start to add up. But really, what the heck do any of us know? I read this thread every time it gets bumped up and I try to read tea leaves like everyone else. I think I'm switching to it-is-what-it-is mode.
 

dcmissle

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If he is smart, Butler will play 16 games on the tender and be open to discussing a long term deal that will pay him handsomely but not as well as an unrestricted free agent, which he is not. And if they are smart, the Pats will grant him a wink-and-nod that he will not be franchised, as Hightower was not franchised.

If they are smart, there is NFW the Saints part with a first-round pick and a top-of-the-market contract for Butler. Nor would any other team, with the possible exception of the Steelers, who have acute weaknesses at this position and far closer to being "one player away" than the Saints -- and I don't expect the Steelers to do it.

I expect that everyone will play it smart. And correspondingly, I expect more than a little frustration in this and a companion thread over two players who either will not be traded -- or traded for less than people are hoping.

You can't say give me the 11th pick in the draft AND give Butler the contract he wants or take on an unhappy Butler. People are not that stupid.
 

snowmanny

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If he is smart, Butler will play 16 games on the tender and be open to discussing a long term deal that will pay him handsomely but not as well as an unrestricted free agent, which he is not. And if they are smart, the Pats will grant him a wink-and-nod that he will not be franchised, as Hightower was not franchised.

If they are smart, there is NFW the Saints part with a first-round pick and a top-of-the-market contract for Butler. Nor would any other team, with the possible exception of the Steelers, who have acute weaknesses at this position and far closer to being "one player away" than the Saints -- and I don't expect the Steelers to do it.

I expect that everyone will play it smart. And correspondingly, I expect more than a little frustration in this and a companion thread over two players who either will not be traded -- or traded for less than people are hoping.

You can't say give me the 11th pick in the draft AND give Butler the contract he wants or take on an unhappy Butler. People are not that stupid.
I agree. They were never getting 11. If they end up trading him for 32 I'm quite OK with it. If they trade him for 42 I'm pretty much OK. If it's 76 or 103 I'd rather the Pats just keep him and be great.
 

Koufax

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The Pats keeping him and being great sounds like a winner. A draft pick is too speculative when we have a sure thing in Butler.
 

bakahump

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Aside from the fact the schedule isn't out yet, it looks like you rated the Jets and Steelers the same: "probably not bad". That seems...wrong.

My bad. I saw the opponents in a list and beside game numbers and assumed that was the schedule.

Beyond Brown, Pitts WR options are terrible and the Jets all suck. As I said assuming that Brown is taken by Gilmore that would leave Butler on who?

That said, yea the Schedule screwup is on me. Was just looking deeper to see if that might have been a consideration.
 

DJnVa

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Beyond Brown, Pitts WR options are terrible and the Jets all suck. As I said assuming that Brown is taken by Gilmore that would leave Butler on who?
The Steelers have a real QB, an all-world WR, and the Jets, well, don't. That's 2 players better than anyone the Jets throw out there at those spots.
 

bakahump

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Agreed. But we also have Gilmore to help mitigate that. My whole point (based on the wrong assumption that the schedule was out) was that Butler might have an set of easy assignments during the games he chose to play (assuming he held out).

If the Steelers have Big Ben and Brown, And Gilmore has primary coverage, then it really doesnt matter to Butler if Brown caught 19 passes for 400 yards. He could still point to the film and say "I shut down my guy".
 

PaulinMyrBch

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My bad. I saw the opponents in a list and beside game numbers and assumed that was the schedule.

Beyond Brown, Pitts WR options are terrible and the Jets all suck. As I said assuming that Brown is taken by Gilmore that would leave Butler on who?

That said, yea the Schedule screwup is on me. Was just looking deeper to see if that might have been a consideration.
Well if Martavis Bryant clears drug suspension and comes back, he's the big, so it'd be Gilmore/Bryant, Butler/Brown with safety help. Bryant isn't terrible, just off the radar with the suspension.
 

DJnVa

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Agreed. But we also have Gilmore to help mitigate that. My whole point (based on the wrong assumption that the schedule was out) was that Butler might have an set of easy assignments during the games he chose to play (assuming he held out).

If the Steelers have Big Ben and Brown, And Gilmore has primary coverage, then it really doesnt matter to Butler if Brown caught 19 passes for 400 yards. He could still point to the film and say "I shut down my guy".
I mean, maybe we're talking past each other but it seems that your argument is that it's easier to shut down the Steelers #2 WR with Big Ben throwing to him than the Jets #2 with Shitty QB of the Week throwing to him.

Steelers #2 PLUS Big Ben > Jets #2 PLUS Flotsam and Jetsam under center.

That's really my only point. The Steelers passing game is light years better than the Jets, even if you assume Gilmore shuts down whoever he's matched up on.
 

bakahump

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Fair enough DD.

Shitty point on my part anyway, seeing as how I muffed the schedule thing.

Butler makes alot of money regardless of how the season goes. Gilmore is exhibit A for looking pretty bad at times and still getting paid.
 

tims4wins

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No offense, but this schedule discussion makes no sense. Butler isn't going to sit out 10 games and give up $244K per game.
 

bakahump

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Most likely not, But his agent and Butler have been going about this unconventionally. So we dont know what they will do.

Regardless of the schedule thing (which I admit was a screwup on my part), by sitting out he loses nothing over what he was scheduled to make this year. He also plays less games (and in theory could lower his injury risk). Butler and his agent have done things and continue to do things their own way under their own perceptions. So hell it might surprise me but I don't think its impossible for them to holdout. If he truly fears injury then Taking his 660K this year, pray he gets through the 6 games or so and take his chances at 20-30 million guaranteed next year might seem more attractive then taking 3.91 million this year risk getting hurt and then be out of the game forever.

Again if that's his thinking I don't see why he doesn't just buy the insurance.
 

wilked

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There is a very real chance that his absence could provide an opportunity for another on the team (Rowe?) to step up. He may very well lose his job should he sit those games
 

bankshot1

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He should play for the $3.9MM, take out an insurance policy (for injury 1% premium on face value so $200k on $20MM, or thereabouts,) gets a wink/wink about non-franchise tagging, and bust his ass hope he wins another SB and signs his mega-deal as a FA.
 

BigJimEd

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First, he can do that in a couple weeks. I'm guessing he probably will. However what people should do isn't anyways what they end up doing.

But I doubt he will get any wink wink about the franchise tag.
 

Stitch01

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If he is smart, Butler will play 16 games on the tender and be open to discussing a long term deal that will pay him handsomely but not as well as an unrestricted free agent, which he is not. And if they are smart, the Pats will grant him a wink-and-nod that he will not be franchised, as Hightower was not franchised.

If they are smart, there is NFW the Saints part with a first-round pick and a top-of-the-market contract for Butler. Nor would any other team, with the possible exception of the Steelers, who have acute weaknesses at this position and far closer to being "one player away" than the Saints -- and I don't expect the Steelers to do it.

I expect that everyone will play it smart. And correspondingly, I expect more than a little frustration in this and a companion thread over two players who either will not be traded -- or traded for less than people are hoping.

You can't say give me the 11th pick in the draft AND give Butler the contract he wants or take on an unhappy Butler. People are not that stupid.
Why do you expect frustration? The overwhelming consensus here is to keep Butler for 2017.
 

dcmissle

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My sense from some of the posts is that Butler may hard line this, sit out 10 games, prove to be a pain in the ass and therefore should be moved. My sense from the JG thread is that the Pats will move him if they have any brains, and that teams, esp Cleveland, should pay through the ass to get him. In both instances, we should get a "haul."

I don't see the market shaping up that way. Already stated my views on why Butler is worth more to the Pats than anyone else, and why it would be irrational for other teams to offer a plus contract to him and a high pick to us. So I hope that is the overwhelming consensus and that Butler is kept.

On JG, if you assume the Pats want to deal him, which could be a huge IF, I just see teams waiting us out. Cleveland is going nowhere in a hurry; dare us to franchise him next year and build a strong team with the draft ammo in the meantime.

And as the draft approaches, I suspect the shiny new things, if anything, will become shinier and more desirable. So no "haul". FWIW, I think the Pats know this and are comfortable with it given the substantial additions they have made via FA and trades.
 

Stitch01

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I think your read on Butler is off. Most people think he's staying and playing and are happy about it. JimmyG, much more diverse set of opinions.
 

pappymojo

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Certainly interesting in that the Patriots would only be able to franchise one or the other after the coming year but it is not even clear that the Patriots would franchise either player next year. There were enough reports regarding the Hightower negotiations to suggest that the Patriots don't view the franchise tag as an effective tool for keeping a player in a healthy relationship with the team.

Could the Patriots keep Butler this year at the $3.9 million price tag and not use the tag? Ask him to come back to the Patriots with his best offer after having negotiated with other teams, just like they did with Hightower. That seems hard to envision.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I think what happened is that the story got out that the Patriots and the Saints were working on a deal or maybe Butler was part 2 of the Cooks trade. And that sort of got the ball rolling, with the suggestion that maybe the 32 was coming back to the Patriots which led to concern that they were getting less value than Butler was worth, which led to the speculation that he was unhappy.

Which got fueled with stories that his agent was a bonehead and even one surprising story from an otherwise good reporter that maybe the Patriots saw Butler as a character risk.

Now, of course, the underlying narrative has changed, given that it seems at the moment the Patriots are not going to give him up for a 32. But the backstory that everyone filled in to explain events that no longer seem to be the case if they ever were somehow persists.

Sports journalism and twitterverse in 2017, I guess. There's no reason to believe that any of the speculation that has been reported as though it were actually worth reporting has any reflection in reality. Butler could be seething at the Patriots. Or he could be completely at peace with whatever happens. Or something in between. We really have no idea. The only facts we know are that he visited the Saints, he hasn't signed his tender yet (though why would he), and that to date he has not been traded or extended. That's pretty much it.
 

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I think what happened is that the story got out that the Patriots and the Saints were working on a deal or maybe Butler was part 2 of the Cooks trade. And that sort of got the ball rolling, with the suggestion that maybe the 32 was coming back to the Patriots which led to concern that they were getting less value than Butler was worth, which led to the speculation that he was unhappy.

Which got fueled with stories that his agent was a bonehead and even one surprising story from an otherwise good reporter that maybe the Patriots saw Butler as a character risk.

Now, of course, the underlying narrative has changed, given that it seems at the moment the Patriots are not going to give him up for a 32. But the backstory that everyone filled in to explain events that no longer seem to be the case if they ever were somehow persists.

Sports journalism and twitterverse in 2017, I guess. There's no reason to believe that any of the speculation that has been reported as though it were actually worth reporting has any reflection in reality. Butler could be seething at the Patriots. Or he could be completely at peace with whatever happens. Or something in between. We really have no idea. The only facts we know are that he visited the Saints, he hasn't signed his tender yet (though why would he), and that to date he has not been traded or extended. That's pretty much it.
You can lead a horde to knowledge, but you can't make them think
 

E5 Yaz

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Mike Triplett ESPN Staff Writer
Saints GM Mickey Loomis didn't offer much detail on where things stand with Patriots restricted free agent cornerback Malcolm Butler. When asked if the deal is "dead," Loomis said, "I don't know what deal you're talking about" since there is no deal to be made until Butler is under contract with New England. But when asked if the Saints' interest level is the same as it's always been, Loomis said, "I'd rather not answer that."
 

tims4wins

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If he switches agents, massive LOL

Edit: did Curran really say he is considering switching agents, or that he "should" consider switching agents, or "could be thinking about" switching agents? Big difference. I have my doubts Curran flat out said that. Any video link?
 
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bakahump

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I can picture BB in his office "5..4...3..2...Hello Tom, Yes I heard Malcolm made a change. My offer? Well let me ask this, what did you have in mind?"
 

Otto

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The agent thing is a non-story. Every player is in "agent shopping mode," whether anyone else hears about it or not.
 

Harry Hooper

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The agent thing is a non-story. Every player is in "agent shopping mode," whether anyone else hears about it or not.
Haven't there been instances in the BB era of impasses being broken when a player switched agents and then a deal was reached very shortly afterward?
 

Otto

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Even if Butler gets a new contract, it won't be that complicated. I don't know this particular agent so this is a general statement only, but its not like Agent A can't figure out how to get "that" contract structured but Agent B can. In a situation like this, if an agent change is quickly followed by a new deal, to me that just means the player needed a second person to tell him what he was worth - not that Agent B solved some complicated impasse.

This discussion reminds me of a reported grievance decision where James Ihedigbo fires his agent because he didn't want to take the deal the agent had negotiated, and his next agent gets a deal done for Ihedigbo a week or two later with the same team - for less money.

Sorry ... back to Malcolm Butler! I'll stop now...
 

tims4wins

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Even if Butler gets a new contract, it won't be that complicated. I don't know this particular agent so this is a general statement only, but its not like Agent A can't figure out how to get "that" contract structured but Agent B can. In a situation like this, if an agent change is quickly followed by a new deal, to me that just means the player needed a second person to tell him what he was worth - not that Agent B solved some complicated impasse.

This discussion reminds me of a reported grievance decision where James Ihedigbo fires his agent because he didn't want to take the deal the agent had negotiated, and his next agent gets a deal done for Ihedigbo a week or two later with the same team - for less money.

Sorry ... back to Malcolm Butler! I'll stop now...
To me, it is more that the agent may be giving Butler poor direction. But you may completely disagree
 

DJnVa

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Haven't there been instances in the BB era of impasses being broken when a player switched agents and then a deal was reached very shortly afterward?
1. Girardi states Butler starting to understand he'll need to sign tender and play in NE.
2. Source states Pats not interested in Sherman.
3. Butler agent shopping.
 

tims4wins

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I would entertain the thought of acquiring Sherman even if Butler stays. They certainly have the cap space. That secondary would be the best in the league with Sherman/Gilmore outside and Butler inside.
It would make sense if you assume Butler is only around for 1 more year, and that you won't give Sherman a new contract. I wouldn't trade for Sherman and give him a new contract, but I'd happily take him for 2 years at $22.5M
 

E5 Yaz

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Schefter was on SC this morning and suggested it would be something akin to when the Bucs traded for Revis ... a 1 and a conditional 4
 

snowmanny

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Meanwhile, on the NFL station on Sirius they were talking to some writer from Seattle and suggesting a 2nd or maybe a 3rd.

Who the hell knows? NFL trades are odd.

Edit: actually a radio guy from Seattle, Danny O'Neil. The overall theme was that the Seahawks may be ready to start breaking up this defense, that Carroll wears on players after awhile, and they might like a little cap space, and so forth. Edit2: he thought Sherman might want to go.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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At this point I hope this is smoke. If he really is available for that kind of comp, the Patriots blew the wad on Cooks and I don't think could be a player if the Steelers, Raiders and even Dolphins were interested.
 

bakahump

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If Jimmy G basically became Sherman would you do it?

Sherman, Gilmore, Butler

And pray for a healthy Brady.
 

E5 Yaz

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I'm really only posting this because Peter King said something foolish on the Rich Eisen Show today, but ...

Hey! Peter King was on the Rich Eisen radio show today and said that Butler likely will be traded. He argued against getting the 32 from the Saints. His reasoning was that with such a deep draft, the Patriots would be better served with New orleans' second-rounder and a late-third, early fourth pick.

No one challenged King on this; but I wish someone had asked why he thought that if the Patriots got 32, that they would stay there. That's a prime trade-down pick for someone to jump back in and grab -- perhaps even offering a better pair of picks than King preferred from the Saints.