Restricted free agent Malcolm Butler will visit with the Saints

Brandin Cooks has no ill will toward the New Orleans Saints for putting him on the trading block and sending him to New England. He's going from a team that never reached the playoffs during his three seasons to one that has competed in the postseason eight consecutive seasons and has missed the playoffs just twice since 2001.

"Coming to New England it seems like it's an offense that guys do a bunch of different things and I'm looking forward to being able to do some things that I didn't necessarily have to do in New Orleans, hopefully to get the chance here and do it here", Cooks said. That also allows the Patriots to match any offer sheet made to Butler by other National Football League teams, and that includes the New Orleans Saints.

The wide receiver's name was mentioned in various trade rumors before he ultimately was dealt to the Patriots last Friday, but he said those didn't stem from any animosity between him and the Saints. If they don't, they Saints will be forced to part ways with their first-round pick in 2017 which is the number 11 spot.

He showed off that speed in New Orleans' season opener this past season when he caught a pass along the sideline and sprinted by two Oakland Raiders defenders for a franchise-record 98-yard touchdown.


That deal opens the possibility that Butler could be persuaded to sign his restricted free-agent tender with the Patriots and then be traded to New Orleans for assets other than the Saints' 11th overall choice. In the most recent edition, Cooks drew a lot of attention during his one-on-one battles with Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler.

"I'm just thankful for the opportunity", Cooks said. "No bad blood. I loved everything about the organization and the people". And I already knew that I was gonna be able to come down and be a factor for 'em. I don't have to be the superstar.

"Oh boy, no, I didn't", Cooks said.

But Malcolm Butler, who sealed ring No. 4 with his goal-line interception of the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX and went on to become the team's star cornerback, is an unhappy camper. Would you be okay with the Texans coughing up their second round pick for a proven, veteran cornerback? "And to be sent off to a good team, for me, I think is a win-win situation".

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