Stephon Gilmore still sounds displeased with how the New England Patriots handled his rehab after a quad injury forced him to undergo surgery in December of 2020.
Speaking with reporters after the Patriots traded him to the Carolina Panthers in October, Gilmore said, "I didn’t like how they handled my situation with my injury. A lot went on with that that I didn’t agree with, and now that I’m (in Carolina), I’m able to do the things I have to do to get me back ready to where I need to be."
Gilmore, during that press conference, didn't go in-depth on why he felt the Patriots mishandled his injury. Fast forward about two months and the veteran cornerback has finally revealed some specifics.
"When you return to play, you want to rehab back to return to play. But I felt like they were doing more workouts than rehab, more working out like someone (who) was 100 percent healthy and in the offseason program," Gilmore told The Athletic's Joseph Person in a story published Sunday.
"But I was rehabbing, coming back from surgery. So that’s different. I think you should take steps to come back and play.
What about the rehab did Gilmore not like?
"I didn’t show up there over the summer, so I was on the right track. And then I show up there and start on all the unnecessary stuff," Gilmore explained to Person.
"Like, right before I got traded, I ran like 3,000 yards in three days. Like a real workout. It’s like, why would you do all that right before you trade me? You don’t do that. Let me do it my way. I don’t know if they were trying to test (the leg) and see, I don’t know. I’m not the type of guy that says, ‘Oh, I don’t want to do that.’ I work hard. I do my stuff. I just think that wasn’t right."
Gilmore has played in five games for the Panthers but only has been on the field for 126 defensive snaps. He's tallied tallied nine tackles with two passes defensed and two interceptions during that span.
The last month of the 2021 season is an important stretch for Gilmore. He's able to become an unrestricted free agent in the offseason. Therefore, Gilmore needs to prove that he's both healthy and still an elite player in order to maximize his value on the market in March.