Butler was absent for the start of OTAs last week. However, it’s worth mentioning that the workouts are just voluntary at this point.
Even so, Reiss writes that this decision could be viewed as “a statement to the organization that he’s unhappy with the status quo and/or the movement/specifics of contract talks.”
- Joel Corry mentions that Butler has little leverage in his demand for a new contract, given that he only has two years of NFL experience.
- Corry believes Butler may be in line for a first-round restricted tender for 2017, which would pay out between $3.925 – $3.95 million.
- It’s likely that LBs Jamie Collins and Dont’a Hightower will be higher priorities for the Patriots when it comes to new deals over Butler, according to Corry.
- In the end, Corry says that Butler’s best-case-scenario would be for him to secure a new deal similar to the one signed by Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict — four years, $20 million.
Butler has clearly earned a new contract from the Patriots after making a critical play that clinched a Super Bowl and following that up with a Pro Bowl performance in 2015.
Butler, 26, wound up signing on with the Patriots as an undrafted free agent out of West Alabama back in 2014. He’s currently in the final year of his rookie contract and stands to make a base salary of $600,000 for the 2016 season before testing the market as a restricted free agent next year.
In 2015, Butler appeared in all 16 games and recorded 67 tackles, two interceptions, and 15 pass defenses for the Patriots. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 24 cornerback out of 111 qualifying players.
We’ll have more regarding a new deal for Butler as the news is available.