Malcolm Butler Opens Up About Being Benched During Super Bowl

Jonathan Grant | March 15th, 2018

Three years ago, former New England Patriots cornerback made one of the biggest plays in Super Bowl history as he picked off Seattle’s Russell Wilson on the goalline to secure his team a victory.

When the the Patriots squared off against the Philadelphia Eagles in the Super Bowl, Butler was nowhere to be found on the field as he was benched on the sideline.

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Butler, who signed with the Titans today and hasn’t talked to Patriots coach Bill Belichick since the game, recently spoke about why he did not touch the field on defense in the Super Bowl.

“I never got a reason,” Butler told the Herald. “I feel like this was the reason: I got kind of sick. I went to the hospital. They probably thought I was kind of late on the game plan; I wasn’t as locked in as I should be and could have been a matchup deal. It could have been anything. But Bill Belichick has been doing this for a very long time. He took a veteran out of Super Bowl XLIX (against the Seahawks) and put in a first-year rookie, and that turned out right, so you could never question his decision. It didn’t work out right (against the Eagles). It didn’t work out the best for me or him or the New England Patriots. But I can say he won more than he lost, so it is what it is. I always have love for New England, Bill Belichick, Mr. Kraft, all those guys. Life just goes on.”

Give Butler credit; while he was never told or given a reason why he couldn’t play in one of the biggest games in his career, he still credits Belichick with being an extremely successful coach.

“I just had to keep moving, man,” Butler said. “I recovered pretty fast. You can’t change the past. Whatever happens, happens. I just had to keep moving forward. I always knew I had a bright future ahead of me. It was just time to move on. Even when you’re not ready to move on, you’ve got to move on, so I just kept moving on, just tried to keep my confidence up and rebuild everything from the ground up.”

Butler added that he does not have any spite when it comes to former teammates or Patriots fans.

“Like I always said, New England fans, they really love me, man,” Butler said. “They loved me at times when they shouldn’t love me. I know that, and they know that, too. For the most part, they really had love for me. My teammates, they should have my back because I never disrespected any of my teammates. I never disrespected any of my coaches. I always respected their authority. I always try to carry myself in a good way. I always remember where I came from, work hard, do what you’re asked or told. The rumors, there is going to be stuff like that. Everybody is going to have their turn to get got or have false information put on them. That just comes with the territory. But everything worked out well. It is what it is.”

While Butler did not play in the Super Bowl, it did not affect his paycheck as he just signed a six-year $61 million deal with the Titans, making him one of the highest paid cornerbacks in the league.

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