If you have been keeping track of the Patriots’ OTAs, you have probably been wondering, where is Super Bowl hero Malcolm Butler?

Malcolm Butler Benched During OTAs

Butler was originally late to the May 26 start date because his flight, the night before, was canceled due to bad weather. As a result, Bill Belichick decided to bench the Super Bowl hero for the first two weeks of OTAs, according to ESPN’s sources. Since the story broke yesterday, the cornerback confirmed he returned to practice this week.

Now, for people who do not understand Belichick’s logic, he advises players against flying in the night before for this very reason.  Harsh weather is a part of playing in New England. Therefore, a delayed flight is not an excuse for missing the beginning of OTAs and grounds for the coach’s decision.

At the same time, Butler was still able to attend all meetings and was even able to do his workouts in the team’s facility: he just could not practice with the team on the field. And this absence is a huge setback for the young cornerback, who is expected to take on a bigger role after the departure of Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner. Butler will be competing with eight other cornerbacks — Derek Cox, Bradley Fletcher, Justin Green, Jimmy Jean, Robert McClain, Darryl Roberts, Logan Ryan and Daxton Swanson — for a starting position, with the competition still being somewhat up in the air.

“I really don’t have a comment about that,” he stated when asked today about his suspension. “I’m just glad to get back out here… Just trying to get better. I’m really not going to get into that.”

“This is a big opportunity I don’t want to mess up, so I have to prepare myself the best way I can,” he continued. “So that’s what I’m going to do.”

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