The New England Patriots’ defense should be one of the best in the NFL next season following their free agent splurge and the return of key opt outs.
However, their ceiling might hinge on the future of Stephon Gilmore, who’s outlook for 2021 is uncertain amid his contract dispute.
The star cornerback held out of mandatory minicamp, making it clear that he wants a new-and-improved deal, and all signs suggest he’d consider sitting out of training camp, which gets underway in less than a month, if the saga dragged on that far.
Unfortunately for Patriots fans, they won’t like this latest update. It’s not necessarily an update, actually, but you better believe it’s set social media ablaze, and understandably so.
On Tuesday, Gilmore was openly donning a Dodgers cap on Twitter. This might not seem like a huge deal to some fans, but Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey was actively recruiting Gilmore to Los Angeles on social media a few weeks ago, so make of it what you will.
Patriots fans won’t like Stephon Gilmore’s latest outfit choice.
It’s worth noting that this could be nothing.
However, it could be Gilmore sending a subliminal message to the Patriots. “Either make me one of the highest-paid CBs in the league, or I’ll quest a trade to a contender that’ll make sure I’m properly compensated,” or something along those lines.
Of course, Patriots fans will recall Ramsey both tweeting at Gilmore and dedicating an entire Instagram story in an attempt to steal him from New England.
It’s unclear whether the two star cornerbacks have been in contact this offseason, but Gilmore repping a Dodgers cap while his future with the Patriots extremely murky surely won’t help fans sleep any easier tonight, or any night in the near future, for that matter.
We’re just speaking hypothetically, but if the Rams pursue Gilmore via trade, they would only absorb his $7 million salary for 2021, not his $16.3 million cap hit. That fits right into their wheelhouse given they only have $7.68 million in remaining cap space.
The Patriots are playing a dangerous game with Gilmore, but we wouldn’t hit the panic button just yet. After all, the former Defensive Player of the Year was reportedly in town as recently as last week, and ESPN insider Mike Reiss is of the mindset that Gilmore enjoys being a Patriot and is open to signing a long-term deal with the franchise.
On top of that, the market for Gilmore might not be as big as you think. The idea of giving up assets for a 31-year-old cornerback who’s coming off an injury-shortened season might not resonate with some teams, even ones that are in need of help in the secondary.
In any event, this saga isn’t ending anytime soon, so Patriots fans should get comfortable. Let’s check in on Gilmore’s latest messages.
Oh, ok. Yeah. Alright. Pretty good.
This isn’t ending anytime soon.