The New England Patriots’ 2018 offseason has been an interesting one, to say the least. The team has been the subject of rumors ever since its defeat in Super Bowl 52 in early February. Countless stories have been written about the Patriots, while speculations about the franchise’s future were at an all-time high. But what do you think: Which storyline takes the proverbial cake?
Let’s take a look at our three contestants.
The Malcolm Butler Super Bowl saga
Following New England’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, cornerback Malcolm Butler found himself at the center of discussion after he surprisingly did not play a single defensive snap in the game. The reasoning behind the decision will likely never come to light, but that did not stop the rumor mill from running – and at times producing hilarious theories: Was Butler punished for missing curfew? Did he suffer from a mysterious illness? Did head coach Bill Belichick throw the game on purpose to get back at team owner Robert Kraft (hint: he did not)? Anyway, it was a tiresome story.
Everything Tom Brady
Once the Butler talk died down, it was Tom Brady’s turn to provide headlines. He never committed to playing in 2018. He missed voluntary offseason workouts for the first time in forever. He is unhappy – you know the rumors by now. Ultimately, none of them will matter much in the grand scheme of things as Brady was present during the Patriots’ mandatory minicamp and looked like his usual self. But even with the drama apparently over, some speculation still pops up every now and then.
Everything Rob Gronkowski
Immediately after the title game, the NFL’s best tight end was asked about committing to returning in 2018. He did not give a clear answer and the questions were on. What followed were weeks of discussion and rumors about his future career in football, or a possible retirement to become a pro wrestler or movie star. Gronkowski did not pursue either career and instead announced his return in late April. Nevertheless, he still finds himself in the headlines on a regular basis.
The Patriots are no fun to play for
New England is the most successful team of the salary cap era and has reached eight Super Bowls under head coach Bill Belichick, winning five of them. Safe to say, Belichick’s approach to football works. However, not all players like his coaching style. Most notable among them are former Patriot Cassius Marsh and Eagles offensive tackle Lane Johnson – they of a combined one Super Bowl ring –, who both criticized the so-called “Patriot Way” over the last few months.
Which Patriots offseason storyline do you think is the most annoying one? One of the three above or a completely different one? Feel free to discuss in the comments – and vote here:
Which Patriots storyline is the most annoying one of the offseason?
This poll is closed
The Malcolm Butler saga
Everything Brady and Gronkowski
The no-fun Patriots
Other (name in comments)