Posted by Will Brinson
In 2009, the Patriots had a whopping four second-round draft picks. On Tuesday, they cut one of those picks, cornerback Darius Butler.
Butler, the 41st-overall pick that year, announced the move on Twitter.
"Its been real New England," Butler tweeted Tuesday. "I was blessed to have a chance to play and start my NFL career here. But its time to open a new chapter. Thx #patsnation."
Per our Patriots Rapid Reporter Greg Bedard, Butler wasn't exactly shocked about the news.
"It wasn't a surprise. I was hearing trade speculation," Butler said. "It happened maybe a little bit later than I wanted, but I'm ready to go forward."
Butler, who played in 15 games last season, recorded just 23 tackles and zero sacks. Butler figured to see some substantial playing time last year when Leigh Bodden went on injured reserve, but he never stepped up his play and eventually lost his starting spot.
With Bodden, blossoming star Devin McCourty and Kyle Arrington topping the depth chart, the Patriots clearly felt they have enough manpower.
Don't expect to see the youngster stay on the open market long, though. As Steve Reed of the Gaston Gazette points out, the Panthers have the first chance at claiming Butler off of waivers and given that their in pretty desperate need of cornerbacks, it would be shocking to see them pass on him.
Interestingly enough (or maybe not?), in the 2009 NFL Draft, Butler went two picks ahead of former Panthers defensive end Everette Brown, who Carolina cut Sunday. Butler won't get them their first-round pick back from the 49ers, but he might salvage something out of what turned out to be an absolutely disastrous draft in 2009.
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