Devin McCourty reveals meeting over Malcolm Butler Super Bowl benching
One of the biggest NFL mysteries of all time belongs to the New England Patriots, when they made the shocking decision to bench then-cornerback Malcolm Butler at Super Bowl LII against the Philadelphia Eagles.
What followed was a defensive collapse for the ages in a game where even Tom Brady’s 505-yard passing performance couldn’t save the team.
Retired Patriots safety Devin McCourty had some interesting things to say on the incident when appearing on the “Green Light with Chris Long.”
“Think about, if there was something to know, we’re years past, all of those guys on the team, and you haven’t heard anybody [reveal anything],” said McCourty. “Like, none of us knew. As a matter of fact, the next year, I remember meeting with [defensive coach Brian Flores], and Flo was like, ‘Hey, we’ve just got to make sure that whole situation doesn’t affect the team this year.’
“He was like, ‘I look back at Seattle when we played them in the Super Bowl, and they don’t run the ball. It kind of seemed like that was the end of that team. They never got back to the Super Bowl.’ And that team was so talented. That Seattle team had everything. He was like, ‘I just don’t want that to destroy us.'”
More from Devin McCourty's @greenlight interview:
He said Brian Flores met with him the year after the Butler benching to make sure it didn't "destroy" the team like passing on the goal line in SB49 did to Seattle.
Also said he and Gilmore both can't wait for Butler's book. pic.twitter.com/SQ0CUwuwhj
— Zack Cox (@ZackCoxNESN) March 22, 2023
McCourty admitted both he and former teammate Stephon Gilmore are looking forward to reading Butler’s upcoming book, which might provide more details on what actually happened behind the scenes.
It’s still crazy that the Patriots were such a tight-lipped organization that even the players on the team didn’t know what happened with Butler.
Fortunately, New England didn’t turn into Seattle and bounced back the following season by defeating the Los Angeles Rams 13-3 to win Super Bowl LIII.
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