Malcolm Butler: Patriots 'gave up on me' in Super Bowl

Josh McDaniels

The cornerback who clinched Super Bowl XLIX with an interception on the goal line was suited up for Super Bowl LII, but he did not play a single defensive snap in what was likely his final game for the team. When sideline reporter Michele Tafoya followed up with Bill Belichick at halftime, the Patriots head coach said his personnel moves are meant to give the team "the best chance to win".

"I ain't got nothing to say", Butler told reporters in the locker room after the game, per NFL.com's Kevin Patra.

"It is what it is. I don't know what it was", an emotional Butler said as he walked toward the team buses with his family.

"They gave up on me. I don't know. But I could have changed that game".

Browner, who was on the field next to Butler on his iconic interception, posted a series of Instagram messages during the game defending the Patriots cornerback and blasting Belichick, who called the benching a coach's decision.

Rowe and the rest of the secondary continued to get torched by Nick Foles all game long resulting in the former backup receiving Super Bowl MVP with 373 passing yards and three touchdowns.

The decision even has some long-term consequences as this all but shuts the door on Butler - unrestricted free agent - returning to New England next year. "Great organization. They gave me the opportunity".

Butler had battled the flu this week but was cleared and not listed on the injury report.

After the game, Belichick said it was a football decision, not a disciplinary move. No matter how you are feeling about Butler at the moment, many can agree he at least deserved the chance to go out and prove himself in the Super Bowl.

Added Gilmore, the team's other starting cornerback: "He's a great player. That's how the game goes sometimes".

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