New England Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler's season is over, as the team placed him on injured reserve Tuesday. It's unclear what kind of injury Butler is dealing with, but his comeback bid will have to wait another year.
Butler signed a two-year deal with the Patriots in March after sitting out the 2021 season -- reuniting with the franchise with whom he found fame. Undrafted out of West Alabama in 2014, Butler made the goal-line, game-winning interception of Russell Wilson in Super Bowl XLIX as a rookie. He then made the Pro Bowl in 2015, and was named All-Pro in 2016 while the Patriots won another Super Bowl.
After being infamously benched in Super Bowl LII, Butler signed with the Tennessee Titans ahead of the 2018 season. In 2020, he had a career year in which he recorded 100 combined tackles, 14 passes defensed and four interceptions, but was released as a cap casualty. Butler agreed to play for the Arizona Cardinals in 2021, but retired due to personal reasons that were not made public.
During OTAs, Bill Belichick was complimentary of Butler, who was "rejuvenated" by his return to Foxboro.
"Malcolm works hard, like he always has," Belichick said. "Very competitive, out there scrapping for balls. His aggressiveness, play style -- we're not in pads, but yeah, looks like it's about the same."
Butler will turn 33 next March, but still has one year remaining on his new contract. Butler wasn't the only cornerback New England placed on injured reserve Tuesday, as the Patriots also shut down Joejuan Williams due to a shoulder injury. At cornerback, the Patriots are now set to move forward with Terrance Mitchell, Jalen Mills, Shaun Wade, Marcus Jones, Jack Jones and Jonathan Jones.