Malcolm Butler shoots down many of the rumors regarding his Super Bowl benching.
Cornerback Malcolm Butler denies that he missed any curfew or attended concerts during Super Bowl week that led to his benching in the New England Patriots' 41–33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LII.
Butler told ESPN's Mike Reiss after the game that the Patriots "gave up" on him. Butler will become an unrestricted free agent in March.
Butler posted the following statement on Twitter.
"I want to thank Mr. Kraft, the Kraft family, and my coaches for giving me an opportunity to play for one of the most successful organizations in sports. I also thank my teammates, as we have won a lot of games together, and all I know is winning! I have always respected everyone at the New England Patriots organization from Custodians, staff and Coach Belichick. In each of my Four years we have achieved Conference Championships or Super Bowl victories since I arrived in New England. All of this would not be possible without thanking some of the best fans in the world who have supported me from day one and, always let me know how much they appreciated me here in New England. During my four year career with Patriots I have always given it everything I have to play at a high level, and would never do anything to hurt my team's chance of winning a game, including this year's Super Bowl where I visited with my family every night. During Super Bowl week I never attended any concert, missed curfew, or participated any of the ridiculous activities being reported. They are not only false, but hurtful, to me and my family. Although I wish I could have contributed more to help my team win, I have to get ready for the next opportunity. Moving forward I will do what I have always done to work hard, and prepare for next season to be the best I can on and off the field." Finally, I want to apologize to any offended by language reported immediately after the game during a very emotional time. It was out of character for me and my character, and heart with God's help is what got me to where I am today. I can't wait for the 2018 season to get here. I will be ready!"
After the game, Belichick told reporters that it was not a disciplinary decision to bench Butler.
Eric Rowe started in Butler's place at cornerback. Butler only saw one snap with the punt return team.
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady left a comment on Butler's Instagram.
"Love you Malcolm. You are an incredible player and teammate and friend," Brady wrote. "Always!!!!!!"