SBLII: What Did the Butler Do?

Marciano490

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If you read it carefully, he specifically denies certain things that have been reported, but other things that have been reported are not addressed in his note. That probably is meaningful.
He said he didn't do anything that's been reported. It's a pretty blanket denial.
 

Byrdbrain

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I've been on the he did something train all along going so far to say that Belichick was lying when he said it wasn't discipline related.
I still can't process that there isn't something more to this but I agree there is no way Butler could just flat out lie like this.

I can come to grips with the coaches deciding that Rowe was a better option as the number 2 corner, I can see that they would prefer a bigger lineup with three safeties covering. But once you've got to go to guys like Richards and Bademosi I just find it hard to believe that Butler isn't a better option. I just can't get there.

But I guess that is what we are left with and what Belichick decided.
 

jmanny24

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I respectfully think the point you’re missing is this: Brady wouldn’t do that. The scenario is moot. Brady would never do that. Butler did. Belichik is NOT the problem here. Butler is.
Respectfully the question is still a good one. Would Belichick have acted the same if it was a higher profile (i.e. more important to the game plan) player that this had happened to during Super Bowl week and would/should he be catching more heat for it if he stuck to his guns?
 

DJnVa

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It was just reported Brady just "liked" Butler's statement.

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Actually no. Because the team never said he missed curfew.

Butler's statement says there was no disciplinary reason and that's exactly the same as what BB said.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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Why wouldn't we believe Butler? It's the same thing that both Belichick and Patricia said. Belichick reiterated it the next day.

Unless one wants to believe unsourced rumors, there is pretty much only a single reason not to believe Butler. It is because it makes us uncomfortable to accept that our favorite coach -- and the greatest of all time -- may have made a bad decision.

That's not a reason. That's wishcasting.
 

DJnVa

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Interested to see Girardi's take because he is one of those reporting about a curfew.
 

tims4wins

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Interested to see Girardi's take because he is one of those reporting about a curfew.
Michael Giardi‏Verified account @MikeGiardi 8m8 minutes ago
Michael Giardi Retweeted Michael Giardi

Here's one thing I would quibble with - Malcolm has not been an easy player to manage or coach, especially this season, and it has been cited to me as a primary reason why the Pats were only willing to extend themselves so far in negotiations last year
 

JokersWildJIMED

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Michael Giardi‏Verified account @MikeGiardi 8m8 minutes ago
Michael Giardi Retweeted Michael Giardi

Here's one thing I would quibble with - Malcolm has not been an easy player to manage or coach, especially this season, and it has been cited to me as a primary reason why the Pats were only willing to extend themselves so far in negotiations last year
Giardi is all in with this garbage. I guess he has to protect his access.
 

Leather

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Respectfully the question is still a good one. Would Belichick have acted the same if it was a higher profile (i.e. more important to the game plan) player that this had happened to during Super Bowl week and would/should he be catching more heat for it if he stuck to his guns?
We don't even know what happened in this instance, in the real world. So, to answer your question in a blunt but perfectly truthful way: who the fuck knows, man?
 

dcmissle

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Giardi’s general characterizations do not trump Malcolm’s specific denials. Because if he was generally difficult to manage all season — you do not wait until the Super Bowl to bench him — THE most important game after which he is gone anyway.

That approach has things bass ackwards.
 

Leather

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Giardi is all in with this garbage. I guess he has to protect his access.
Well, there's still obviously more to the story. If Butler was shitty in practice all week or was ignoring directives from BB on how to play, then you can reconcile both accounts.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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If there is no disciplinary reason here -- and by that I mean a specific disciplinary reason instead of the bullshit general nonsense that Giardi seems to be falling back on -- Malcolm Fucking Butler is all class.

Maybe he wasn't good enough to play in a big game in his coaches' eyes. Maybe he regressed this year. Maybe he got distracted by being a free agent.

But he should never ever have to pay for a beer in New England.

And if there are dickheads in the media or in the area who decide that to protect Belichick's decision they need to shit all over Malcolm to make themselves feel better, that would really suck.
 

jmanny24

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We don't even know what happened in this instance, in the real world. So, to answer your question in a blunt but perfectly truthful way: who the fuck knows, man?
That's completely fair but as a fan I am curious how you would react compared to how you feel about Butler? I would be on BB even more I think, but that is because I think coaches (especially in a title game) should be doing everything within their power to help the team win that game, and for me that didn't happen on Sunday.
 

dcmissle

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I would argue Butler has significantly more to protect by strongly denying these rumors. Giardi loses a source. Butler loses several million.
But if he is caught in a lie denying it, he is fucking fucked. He cannot reasonably run that risk.
 

kenneycb

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But if he is caught in a lie denying it, he is fucking fucked. He cannot reasonably run that risk.
Meh, NFL guys talk so most front offices will probably know enough of the story to have an opinion by the time he hits free agency. Teams that think it's an issue or get down to the issue probably won't go after him.
 

Al Zarilla

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Brady followed up with hearts and flowers for Butler forever.

Update: Tom Brady has commented on Butler’s Instagram post: “Love you Malcolm! You are and incredible teammate and player and friend. Always!”
 

PaulinMyrBch

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Well, there's still obviously more to the story. If Butler was shitty in practice all week or was ignoring directives from BB on how to play, then you can reconcile both accounts.
I'm undecided now. I was taking the stance that questionable behavior left him unprepared and that led to a football decision. I just don't see him declining to the degree where he plays zero snaps without something else. But again, I'd like to see the game and practice tape. Maybe some stuff was pretty obvious.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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But if he is caught in a lie denying it, he is fucking fucked. He cannot reasonably run that risk.
I feel fairly confident -- or at least hope -- that if this was a non-disciplinary related decision, Belichick will be up front with anyone that asks about Malcolm.
 

PaulinMyrBch

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Many people interpret likes to equal endorsements of the contents of the post.
The dude is thanking the organization and teammates in that post. I don't think a like means anyone is picking sides. Those guys fought some battles together. I'd be more surprised if teammates didn't like it.
 

dcmissle

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Meh, NFL guys talk so most front offices will probably know enough of the story to have an opinion by the time he hits free agency. Teams that think it's an issue or get down to the issue probably won't go after him.
Yes, which underscores why you cannot compound any problem that might exist by telling a lie.
 

Byrdbrain

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Many people interpret likes to equal endorsements of the contents of the post.
Sure but it isn't like the post said anything bad about the team or coach. The post did nothing but praise everyone, deny that he broke team rules(corroborating what BB said) and apologize for swearing.

To get back to what Paul asked I don't think there is any problem with Brady and now others on the team liking the post.
 

ScubaSteveAvery

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The dude is thanking the organization and teammates in that post. I don't think a like means anyone is picking sides. Those guys fought some battles together. I'd be more surprised if teammates didn't like it.
I'm not saying the players are choosing sides. But many people will interpret Butler's post as a response to the coaching staff and the media saying bad shit about him. I personally don't think it is an issue, but some will interpret it as the team/players against management. This is the exact reason we are getting real-time updates about who liked an IG post. Sucks, but is what it is.
 

JokersWildJIMED

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Sure but it isn't like the post said anything bad about the team or coach. The post did nothing but praise everyone, deny that he broke team rules(corroborating what BB said) and apologize for swearing.

To get back to what Paul asked I don't think there is any problem with Brady and now others on the team liking the post.
I agree, but given the volatility of the current situation, there is a bit more going into the instant likes of this post.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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If so, then:

Belichick has said twice that it wasn't disciplinary.

He's not going to tell us any more. And I certainly don't think he's going to go on record publicly and explain his Xs and Os reason for making the decision and having everyone in the world second guess him. But if Sean Payton calls and asks, I think Bill will be honest. I hope at least.
 

Rusty13

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Belichick has said twice that it wasn't disciplinary.

He's not going to tell us any more. And I certainly don't think he's going to go on record publicly and explain his Xs and Os reason for making the decision and having everyone in the world second guess him. But if Sean Payton calls and asks, I think Bill will be honest. I hope at least.
Ok, in your original post, you said "anyone", so that threw me off. I agree that there will never be a public record of Belichick explaining the "football" related reasons for this decision.
 

dcmissle

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I'm not saying the players are choosing sides. But many people will interpret Butler's post as a response to the coaching staff and the media saying bad shit about him. I personally don't think it is an issue, but some will interpret it as the team/players against management. This is the exact reason we are getting real-time updates about who liked an IG post. Sucks, but is what it is.
Here is how it will be spun — “It May have taken 16 more years, but they hate their coach.”
 

Captaincoop

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He said he didn't do anything that's been reported. It's a pretty blanket denial.
He denied the "ridiculous activities" being reported. That could be referring to the reports of being caught with weed. I wouldn't read it as a denial that he got in a minor blowup with the coaching staff, was late to something, or other seemingly trivial things that could have been the last straw this past week.

It's worded pretty carefully, IMHO.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I'm undecided now. I was taking the stance that questionable behavior left him unprepared and that led to a football decision. I just don't see him declining to the degree where he plays zero snaps without something else. But again, I'd like to see the game and practice tape. Maybe some stuff was pretty obvious.
The dude is thanking the organization and teammates in that post. I don't think a like means anyone is picking sides. Those guys fought some battles together. I'd be more surprised if teammates didn't like it.
If Butler did something in whole or part that made him not ready for the game I have trouble believing that so many people who may feel they lost a championship because of that decision would have jumped to insta-gram to like. Nor do I think Butler would have been as vehement.

I'm just not seeing any basis to believe that Butler screwed up here. Belichick makes very difficult decisions and sticks to them. It's his calling card. There are zero sacred cows. I think the Occam's razor answer here is Belichick saw something, made a decision that he thought would help his defense against Philly, and stuck with it throughout the game. Again, literally the only basis any of us has to believe otherwise is that we don't want that to be true.
 

Royal Reader

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It's seemed all along that Malcolm did something, and that there will be rumors and innuendo about it, but that ultimately regardless of what it was, it wasn't bad enough for the team to completely exile him, and they have no desire to harm his free agent prospects (both because that's a bad look for future players looking to join up with the Pats, and because he's likely to go to a contender and it's counter to their interests to depress his market).

OF COURSE Butler did something and Belichick is lying about it. Of course the media are going to dig around and try to come up with the most sensational-sounding explanation. But if the Pats don't leak, no one rumor is likely to gain particular traction, and the whole thing will basically blow over for Belichick. There's a discussion to be made, in terms of how good you think their prospects of future SBs are, that it might have been better for BB to ignore his rules and just make the short-term move to win the game, given how high-leverage the single game was.

But no one who's witnessed a moment of how Bill Belichick operates will be surprised. Even if it's hubristic to think they will make it to another Super Bowl, it's the kind of hubris that's necessary to succeed in top-level sports. It's frankly insane to punish players for being late to practice during a snowstorm, but forty-five of the guys on that roster knew it was going to happen and made it in on time anyway. Belichick's way of doing things relies on engendering that level of fanatical commitment in everyone.
 

LesterFan

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Ben Volin on Twitter is already suggesting Brady liking/commenting on Butler's post means more friction between Brady and Belichick.. so yeah.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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Ok, in your original post, you said "anyone", so that threw me off. I agree that there will never be a public record of Belichick explaining the "football" related reasons for this decision.
Yeah, sorry -- all I meant was anyone interested in signing Butler.
 

BaseballJones

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Would we care at all about this had the Patriots scored and not fumbled on that drive, and held on?
No. And we wouldn't have cared about Butler either, because he's gone after this season anyway. Nor would we care about the special teams mistakes. Or the poor tackling. Or the bad call to allow the Clement touchdown. None of it. Winning cures all and changes perspective on everything.

Odd analogy but if you're a golfer and you finish second all the time, that kind of stinks. But really, it's a pretty amazing accomplishment. And then when you WIN, all those second place finishes actually become more impressive. To me, it's like that for the Pats - sure, they've lost 5 Super Bowls (3 in the TB/BB era), and that sounds awful. But it goes along with 5 Lombardis, and so 5 first place finishes and 5 second place finishes (5 golds and 5 silvers) is pretty damned impressive.
 

Marciano490

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He denied the "ridiculous activities" being reported. That could be referring to the reports of being caught with weed. I wouldn't read it as a denial that he got in a minor blowup with the coaching staff, was late to something, or other seemingly trivial things that could have been the last straw this past week.

It's worded pretty carefully, IMHO.
I think you're parsing it a bit much. It's a short statement; I don't know that he needs to disclaim that 5-6 different allegations that've been put out there.
 

bankshot1

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What is the problem with liking the post if you're a teammate?
I don't think there is a problem at all for teammates supporting another teammate. However, within the context of this "controversy" of Butler appearing to be scapegoated by BB for his unpreparedness/readiness for the SB or his skills relative to scheme, the teammate support can be seen as a questioning of BB's curious and controversial personnel decision.

#Mutiny@the Blade
 

Rusty13

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Yeah, sorry -- all I meant was anyone interested in signing Butler.
Got ya. And fair. I also assume -- at least in part -- that many of his fellow teammates realize the impact some of these rumors and innuendo have upon his market as he heads into FA.
 

Captaincoop

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I'm not saying the players are choosing sides. But many people will interpret Butler's post as a response to the coaching staff and the media saying bad shit about him. I personally don't think it is an issue, but some will interpret it as the team/players against management. This is the exact reason we are getting real-time updates about who liked an IG post. Sucks, but is what it is.
The coaching staff hasn't said anything bad about him.

All the post means is that he probably didn't break curfew or do anything major during the run-up to the Super Bowl. It doesn't mean he didn't have a shitty attitude during practice, show a lack of mental focus, or do something minor (or maybe something that he himself didn't see as wrong) that was the last straw in Belichick's eyes.

It was a classy post by Butler, but you can't read too much into what it means for the facts in this case.
 

Shelterdog

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But if he is caught in a lie denying it, he is fucking fucked. He cannot reasonably run that risk.
He's fucking fucked if no one thinks he's a good enough fit for their system to be worth money and if teams do like him for their systems then he's not fucked even if his agent drafted statement isn't all that honest.

His risk assessment is also, well, not so good.