Boston, Patriots still can't let the Malcolm Butler Super Bowl LII mystery go


It's been more than two years since the Eagles beat the Patriots in Super Bowl LII (41-33), but New England players are still trying to figure out what went wrong.

And it seems they keep returning to one point: Bill Belichick's decision to keep cornerback Malcolm Butler out of Pats' lineup.

Veteran running back Shane Vereen, who played for the Patriots from 2011 to 2014, has plenty of friends and former teammates who were part of that runner-up 2017 New England squad.

This week, Boston sports radio asked Vereen if he had any idea why Butler, who sealed Super Bowl XLIX for the Pats with an iconic INT, didn't play. (The Boston area just can't let the question go!)

Vereen said he's tried to find an answer, but...


Shane Vereen is like most of New England in that he still doesn't know exactly why Malcolm Butler didn't play in Super Bowl LII against the Eagles.

The former Patriots running back joined Ordway, Merloni & Fauria on Wednesday and was asked if he knew why the cornerback didn't play in the game?

'No, I have actually asked quite a few guys who were on the team at the time and I have not got the same answer twice,' he said. 'The grassy knoll still exists.'

Vereen acknowledged he's heard a number of different theories, but can't get the same answer twice.

For all the successes Patriots fans have experienced since the turn of the century, it sure seems they like to fixate on the few failures.

Maybe Tom Brady jumping ship for Tampa Bay this summer, and New England's 2020 outlook not exactly looking rosy, has Patriots fans reminiscing. 

But let's be honest: even if Butler had played that evening, the Eagles weren't losing. The 2017 Birds were a team of destiny. We might never get a straight answer about his benching, but we don't really need one.

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