Thursday, 18 January, 2018

Devin McCourty, Chris Long Explain Decision To Skip Patriots' White House Visit

New England Patriots defensive lineman Alan Branch tosses his gloves to a fan after their 26-10 victory over the Los Angeles Rams in an NFL football game Sunday Dec. 4 2016 in Foxborough Mass Devin McCourty, Chris Long Explain Decision To Skip Patriots' White House Visit
Kristopher Love | 20 April, 2017, 07:13

Hours after Malcolm Butler signed his restricted free agent tender, James White reached a long-term agreement with the Patriots, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Of the six known White House no-shows, only Branch, McCourty and Hightower now are under contract with the Patriots. It was a bitter end to a magical season that included the biggest comeback in franchise history (Week 1), the doink, and a complete sweep of the AFC West to claim the first divisional title in Andy Reid's tenure with the team.

The Patriots highest pick in the NFL Draft next week is in round 3, pick 72.

If the Chiefs-Pats game, which will be played at Gillette Stadium, does indeed turn out to be the National Football League opener, it would be a surprise for those like me that thought the opening game would be a Super Bowl rematch between the Pats and Atlanta Falcons. White had 14 catches, 110 receiving yards, one touchdown catch, six carries, 29 yards, and two touchdown runs, one again being the aforementioned game-winner. The NFL opened the 2016 season with the Carolina Panthers visiting the Denver Broncos, a rematch of Super Bowl 50 in which the Broncos won.

Looking at the Patriots 2017 opponents, we figured the Kansas City Chiefs were one of the best possible opponents for the Thursday night season opener.

As for Butler, Curran reports that he's in the middle of spending time celebrating a birthday with his family, and he's also expected to be back in Foxboro this week. James White keeps getting better, and now he's being rewarded for it financially. Great uni matchup, too, while we're at it.

Butler has played in 43 regular-season games with 33 starts, including starts in all 16 games over the last two seasons for the Patriots. Long and Bennett signed with the Philadelphia Eagles and Green Bay Packers, respectively, after Super Bowl LI, and Blount remains an unrestricted free agent.

Blount, a running back for the team, went on the "Rich Eisen Show" on DirecTV in February and said "I just don't feel welcome into that house". The Patriots were reportedly shopping the undrafted cornerback to the Saints in exchange for the 32nd, and then the 11th, selection in the upcoming draft.