Butler, Saints “Not Far Apart” On Offer?

Malcolm Butler‘s camp and the Saints continue to exchange proposals about a potential offer sheet for the fourth-year cornerback. The sides at this point are not far apart on terms, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (on Twitter).

The communication is unfolding entirely between the Saints and Butler, per Rapoport, who adds (Twitter link) the Patriots have not had discussions with the Saints — well, at least on the Butler front — or the cornerback and won’t until he signs his RFA tender.

Butler is a restricted free agent on whom the Patriots placed a first-round tender worth $3.91MM. The Saints are reportedly “enamored” with Butler, according to Michael Giardi of CSNNE.com, who also notes the sides have the parameters of a deal mostly in place. Guaranteed money’s an issue, per Giardi.

A Saints offer sheet that the Patriots don’t match would result in New Orleans’ No. 11 overall pick going to New England. Of course, Butler could sign his $3.91MM tender, and the teams could discuss a different exchange. Sending a pick that high for a 27-year-old talent might be a bit extreme, with Butler wanting top-10 cornerback money, but the Saints are serious about upgrading one of the league’s worst defenses as they showed with the Brandin Cooks trade. They acquired the Pats’ No. 32 overall pick for Cooks, who won’t turn 24 until September.

Butler has until June 15 to sign the RFA tender, which the Patriots can withdraw on that date and pay Butler 110 percent of his 2016 salary ($600K). The former UDFA visited New Orleans last week.

The Saints endured a rough 2016 at cornerback, with key cogs going down with injuries. They have Delvin Breaux, who will make just $619K in the final season of his three-year deal, along with P.J. Williams tentatively slated as their top corners. Both missed extensive time due to injuries last season. Breaux and Butler both played well in full-season breakouts in 2015, but Butler continued that pace last year while the 27-year-old Breaux played in only six games.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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29 comments on “Butler, Saints “Not Far Apart” On Offer?

  1. simonmurray25

    Even without Butler, the Pats are still a better team than they were last year.

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    • planetsabc

      Respectfully disagree, (at least before the draft) we have holes at de and lb, as well as whose going to start opposite Gilmore. There will be a lack of pressure for opposing front 5’s to deal with, and with out a RB (currently) we have no way to. COntrol the clock efficiently, no matter how good our passing game is

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      • hashtag

        Rex burkhead

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      • John Murray

        Clearly you missed the signing of Rex Burkhead. And Lawrence Guy. And that Chris Long was no more than a part time piece all season. I’m not sure in what way you can claim the team isn’t as good as the one that just won the Super Bowl.

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        • mikedickinson

          And the Kony Ealy was signed as a pass rusher. Much better than Chris Long.

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          • ReppinThe401

            And a full season of nink playing more as a part time depth guy

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          • BravesBoi

            Kony isn’t better than Chris. And idk why people always say we don’t have a rb or that our rb will be Rex. He will obviously get some playing time, but as of right now, our starter would definitely be Dion. He’s much better and a proven starter.

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      • yanksknicks

        You seem to be forgetting that the pats didnt have gronk during the super bowl. Adding cooks makes their offense unstoppable.

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  2. jessethegreat

    Steelers sign Butler. Give Pats 29th pick.
    Steelers trade Butler and their 2nd round pick to saints for #11 overall

    Steelers would move from 29 to 11 for their 2nd round pick

    Saints would receive Steelers 2nd round pick with Butler instead of just forfeiting their 11th overall pick for Butler.

    Pats get 29 instead of 11 overall

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    • Turk Murpson

      The Saints wouldn’t give the Steelers the #11 pick for Butler. They dont want to give it to NE, why would they give it to the Steelers. Go ahead and sign Butler. Here’s what would happen…Saints #11 pick, Patriots #29 pick, Steelers #32 pick(which you can’t sign because you’re paying dead money on the Butler signing). Don’t feel bad Jesse, none of us could be a GM either. Peace.

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    • mbraun9

      LOL! Jesse, it makes no sense. Pats could match any offer that Pittsburgh makes for Butler. Pittsburgh doesn’t have the cash to make NE not match…even if they did and NE didn’t match, NO may not want him at that price.

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    • qbass187

      Why? That makes Zero sense. It helps neither the Pats or the Saints…

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  3. Michael Doten Jr

    That would make sense if Butler didn’t demand a signing bonus which is not going to happen. The signing bonus would destroy Pittsburgh’s salary cap.

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    • jessethegreat

      It could very easily have contract stipulation of “guaranteed $20 million due 40th day of league year or something like that.

      Or even better, contract bonus of 20 million trade escalator upon completion of trade by acquiring team.

      Even better, to protect Butler. Clause in Contract that it is voided if he is not traded within 45 days or something like that.

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      • mbraun9

        Jesse, you can’t put poison pill in the restricted FA contract anymore.

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        • jessethegreat

          No poison pill.. you see trade kickers all the time.. jets had one when they dealt for favre (they owe 3 1st round picks if they turn around him to the Vikings).

          There’s nothing illegal at all if they have a bonus due on a certain date within the contract. It’s certainly not illegal to make that bonus guaranteed either.

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  4. Z-A
    Z-A

    If Cooks who is 23 with 2 years of control cost the last pick in the 1st round. Then Butler who is 27, with 1 year of control…. a 3rd round pick.

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    • jessethegreat

      Right.. malcontent diva wr is worth more than super bowl MVP young corner in prime of his career. I suppose Cooks is better than Julio Jones too? You know, because you’re a saints homer and he doesn’t play for the Saints…

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      • Turk Murpson

        I’m a die hard Pats fan but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Butler is an undersized, undrafted free agent that plays with great heart and hustle but he’s already hit his ceiling. He’s 29. That’s not young by NFL standards. On top of that he wants 4-5 years @45-55million , 20 mil gaurenteed. That’s potentially 12-14 million per season. Do you think Butler will be worth 12-14 million per season when he’s 31? I love the guy and I don’t think he will. I’m hoping the Pats match the offer if it’s not over 3 yrs @30. I honestly think 9 million per would be ideal, but I’d pay 10 mil to him for his contributions and part in winning 2 SB’s in his three seasons thus far. If he stays they have a damn good shot at another ring. He be an UFA then send his market would pay huge!

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        • dombrowski

          He’s 27

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        • mbraun9

          A diehard Pats fan that doesn’t know the age of one of the best players on his team.

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          • turkmurpson

            So me mistaking his age is all you can comment about? Why not add some substance to the conversation instead of nitpicking someone else’s.

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    • mbraun9

      So Z-A is saying is that he doesn’t want a top 5 CB on his team. He likes his team to have a crap D!

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    • Clark

      Thats not how it works smart one, first round tender = 1st round pick nothing less and Butler is still a top 15 corner

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  5. Hey hillbilly

    Stop acting like the defense is better even if we lose butler. Gilmore hasn’t been butler in his career. We lost our other starting corner. Gilmore has the desired physical traits but butler has proven to be better and that’s not debatable. Ealy had a monster super bowl and has potential but still players don’t always reach their potential even as a patriot. butler was rated a top 10 corner two years in a row, Gilmore hasn’t reached that once. The offense will get better and the d will be fine but if keeping butler makes us better

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  6. Charles

    Butler is entering his year 27 playing age.

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  7. baseball1279

    Pats need to get a good first round pick from letting butler go or trading jimmy G. Then they need to draft Dalvin Cook or McCaffrey can’t really rely on Burkhead as your starting RB would’ve much rathered blount.

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    • BravesBoi

      BURKHEAD ISNT THE STARTER! It’s going to be Dion

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  8. baseball1279

    don’t know what was so fascinating about burkhead anyways. There was a ton of better options out there.

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