Report: Malcolm Butler visiting the Saints on Thursday

Report: Malcolm Butler visiting the Saints on Thursday

Malcolm Butler may be a restricted free agent, but that doesn't mean he's not free to make visits to clubs around the league.

According to Brett Martel of the Associated Press, Butler will make a free-agent visit to the Saints down in New Orleans on Thursday. 

Butler's name has been linked to the Saints for almost a week now, ever since it was reported that the Patriots were considering a trade that would send the corner to New Orleans in exchange for receiver Brandin Cooks. A swap involving Butler couldn't be worked out at the time because Butler still has not signed his first-round tender with the Patriots and is not under contract. 


The Patriots moved on Cooks regardless, sending their first-rounder (No. 32 overall) and a third-rounder to the Saints in exchange for the dynamic wideout and a fourth. 

With Butler making a visit to New Orleans, though, it seems like a second trade between the Patriots and Saints is in play. 

Here are some of the different possible scenarios for Butler, with one clear front-runner . . . 

* Butler could make a visit to New Orleans and receive an offer sheet. If he were to sign it and the Patriots opted not to match, the Patriots would be handed the Saints first-round pick, which is No. 11 overall. It seems highly unlikely the Saints would be willing to sign Butler to a long-term contract and give up that kind of draft capital, and Larry Holder of confirms that the Saints would not be willing to. 

* Butler could receive an offer sheet from the Saints, and the Patriots could match. This also seems relatively unlikely given the amount of money Bill Belichick and his front office just put into the cornerback position by locking up Stephon Gilmore to a big-money free-agent deal. It's a possibility financially because the Patriots have so much cap space available to them, but if Butler is going to play in New England in 2017, it would seem to make more sense for the team that he play on the first-round tender worth $3.91 million. 

* Butler and the Saints could discuss parameters of a new contract that would be palatable to both sides, which would help lay the groundwork for a trade between New England and New Orleans. This seems to be the most likely scenario. With the framework for a deal with the Saints in place, Butler could return to New England and sign his first-round tender with the Patriots, which would then make him eligible to be traded. Once the Patriots and Saints worked out a deal -- perhaps something that would include New England getting back No. 32 overall -- Butler and the Saints could officially ink a deal that would pay Butler something closer to what he believes he's worth. NFL Media's Ian Rapoport has reported that the Saints and Butler have already started negotiating a new contract, and they're hoping to have something hammered out this week. Once that occurs, and once Butler signs his tender with the Patriots, then a trade can be executed. 

Former Patriots RB Danny Woodhead announces retirement

Former Patriots RB Danny Woodhead announces retirement

Former Patriots running back Danny Woodhead has announced his retirement after 10 years in the NFL.

The 33-year-old took to Instagram to make it official.

10 years! Wow, God had crazy plans for a small little kid from North Platte, NE! It’s been a wild ride and feel so blessed He allowed me to do what I loved for so long. But now it’s time to say goodbye to the game I love. First, I want to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Without Him my career wouldn’t have been possible. He blessed me with the gifts and He paved the way. All I had to do was follow His plans for my life, and His plans were crazy awesome! Next, I want to thank my wife who has been by my side since freshman year of high school. She has been a rock through all the ups and downs. Sis, Willy, Mae Mae, and Hopie your daddy is going to be home a ton more and I can’t wait! Thanks to my Dad and Mom for always supporting me and showing me that God is first, then everything else will fall into place. Ben, Joel, and Anna thanks for preparing me for the NFL in our backyard games growing up. The dreaded in-laws Steve and Suzie for always being there for me. Chris Gittings (agent) you’re the best and thankful your my brother/uncle! Thank you Jets, Patriots, Chargers, and Ravens! Thanks to all my head coaches (Bob Zohner, Brad Smith, Bill O’Boyle, Eric Mangini, Rex Ryan, Bill Belichick, Mike McCoy, and John Harbaugh) who believed in me! To my rbs coaches (coach skiles, coach reiners, Jimmy Raye, A Lynn, Ivan, Ollie, Ridge, and Thomas) thanks for putting up with me. Thanks to all my teammates from high school till now. Without you guys I never would’ve become who I was as a player. To all my olinemen, you guys deserve the credit for anything that I received credit for. I thank you for helping make my career. To all the trainers, team docs, strength coaches, chiropractors, massage therapists, physical therapists, body gurus thanks for making sure I was on the field. To all the people who made my life easier at the facility (ops, pr, equipment staff, cafe workers, custodians) thanks and your work doesn’t go unnoticed. And how could i forget all my fans?! You’re the best and have always felt the love and support! I’m sure I’ve forgotten a few but know that I’m thankful for everything everyone has done on my journey.

A post shared by Danny Woodhead (@teamwoody39) on

Thursday, it was reported the Patriots reached out to Woodhead for a possible reunion. 

The last two seasons have been challenging for him, as he dealt with season-ending injuries in both 2016 with the Chargers and 2017 with the Ravens.

Woodhead finishes his career with 2,238 yards rushing, 2,698 yards receiving, 15 rushing touchdowns and 17 receiving touchdowns.


NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: C's win despite injuries, Pats make additions

NBC Sports Boston Photo

NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: C's win despite injuries, Pats make additions

1:20 - Despite throwing a depleted roster out there, the Celtics were able to get back in the win column vs. the Magic. Michael Holley and Tommy Heinsohn break down the win.

6:17 - Finally, the Patriots have done something! On Friday night it was reported that New England signed defensive end Adrian Clayborn as well as running back Jeremy Hill. Tom Curran, Alex Giaimo and Ben Volin discuss the impact these additions will have on the team.

11:05 - While the Celtics were able to pull out the win on Friday, the team did announce that Marcus Smart is expected to miss six to eight weeks after undergoing thumb surgery. A. Sherrod Blakely expresses his optimism on Smart’s return for the playoffs.