The Malcolm Butler situation in New England is mystifying

The Malcolm Butler situation in New England is mystifying

The Malcolm Butler situation in New England is mystifying

Cornerback Malcolm Butler, the hero of the Patriots Super Bowl 49 against the Seattle Seahawks, was nowhere to be found. Butler dressed for the game but did not play a single snap defensively, only appearing a handful of times on special teams. Nick Foles, the Eagles quarterback who was the backup until Carson Wentz tore a knee ligament, threw for 373 yards and three touchdowns en route to Super Bowl MVP honours, while New England frequently had safeties covering the slot position, from which Philadelphia's Nelson Agholor racked up nine catches for 84 yards.

The New England Patriots came up just short of winning their second consecutive Super Bowl on Sunday night against the Philadelphia Eagles. But of course, it's Belichick's Butler decision that will go down as the most striking in a season filled with head-turning personnel moves, from the offseason all the way through the Super Bowl.

"That doesn't concern me at all", he said when asked about Butler's benching.

Browner was a Patriot when Butler picked off Russell Wilson at the goal-line to seal Belichick's fifth Super Bowl title as the New England head coach.

Instead, Belichick started cornerback Eric Rowe, who said after the game he had "no idea" why Butler didn't start or play in the Patriots' 41-33 loss to the Eagles.

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"Lost the game for us tonight", former cornerback Brandon Browner captioned an Instagram photo of Belichick. "In the end, we have to make the decisions that we feel are best for the football team, and that's what we did, that's what I did".

"I respect Malcolm's competitiveness".

Butler told ESPN after the game, "They gave up on me". Maybe, maybe not. Philadelphia played a almost ideal game and did what it had to do to win, so who knows how they might have responded. "I don't know what it was". God bless u my friend, keep fighting, I saw you tear up pre game, first sign. "I'm sure the players felt the same way". "We all want to be out there, we all want to play, so I know Malc, he's super competitive".

Matt Patricia provided an X's and O's explanation for Butller's benching. This wasn't genius. From a purely football perspective, it was a bone-headed call, which beckons the question: What was the actual reason behind a decision that clearly made the Patriots worse on the field?

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