Patriots counter Tyreek Hill Dolphins trade with incredibly disappointing signing

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Is it crazy to say that everything has gone downhill for the New England Patriots since being crushed by the Bills in the playoffs?

Think about it. Front office manager Dave Ziegler and longtime offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels teamed up with the Raiders. To add insult to injury, McDaniels brought three of Bill Belichick’s most trusted assistants with him to Las Vegas.

Since then, Belichick and the Patriots have sat idly by while several AFC rivals have worked around the clock to bolster their respective rosters. Worst of all, Buffalo was arguably the most aggressive team.

On Wednesday, another AFC East rival – the Dolphins – made a statement by trading for world wide receiver Tyreek Hill, who became available after extension negotiations with the Chiefs came to nothing.

This increased the pressure on New England to do business and they unfortunately followed up Hill’s blockbuster in disappointing fashion by signing the former Super Bowl hero. Malcolm Butler on a two-year contract.

Former Super Bowl XLIX hero Malcolm Butler is back with the Patriots.

For anyone keeping track, the The Patriots let JC Jackson walk for nothing and “replaced” the corner stopper with a lifetime backup to Terrance Mitchell and the well-traveled Butler, who hasn’t played since 2020.

After leaving New England unceremoniously in the 2017 offseason, Butler signed with Tennessee, where he spent three seasons. The former Pro Bowler signed a one-year contract with the Cardinals as a free agent last offseason, but unexpectedly retired just before the start of the season.

Butler spent the year on the reserve/retired roster and DC Cardinals Vance Joseph attributed the corner’s retirement to “personal” matters.

Whatever Butler forced away from the game, he’s back in New England after working with the Raiders and Texans, who each have Patriots ties McDaniels/Ziegler and Nick Caserio.

We never would have guessed Butler would return to the Patriots given how his last game with the franchise went. After playing the hero with a goal-line interception against the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX, Butler didn’t play a single shot in New England’s 41-33 loss to the Eagles in Super Bowl LI.

As we all remember, the Pats defense had no answer for Nick Foles, who sliced ​​Belichick’s unit up for 373 passing yards and three touchdowns while Butler was left on the bench after falling out with defensive coordinator Matt Patricia. , according to ESPN’s Seth Wickersham.

It’s unclear what Butler, 32, left in the tank, but the Patriots’ disappointing cornerback room suggests he could be in line for a big role.

While it’s nice to see Butler back in his place, it’s about as bland as a signing New England could make following Hill’s touchdown in Miami. Given how this offseason has gone so far, is anyone surprised?

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