Much to the delight of many across America, the New England Patriots lost the Super Bowl Sunday. Quarterbacked by backup Nick Foles, who contemplated retiring just two years ago, the Philadelphia Eagles racked up more than 500 yards of offense, scoring an astounding 41 points. The combined offensive output between the two teams set multiple NFL records.
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A big reason Philly accrued that many yards, as some have alluded to, was the benching of starting defensive back Malcolm Butler. In the Patriots previous two postseason games against the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars, Butler played 100 percent of the possible defensive snaps in those games. Against Philly, he played zero percent of defensive snaps.
His benching remains an elusive mystery in the sports world. The notoriously tight-lipped Bill Belichick reiterated multiple times that Butler’s benching was a coaching decision designed to give the Patriots the best chance to win.
But they lost, which has led to increased scrutiny of a possible secret “behind the scenes” motivation as to why Butler was benched. One former fantasy football reporter posted on Twitter the possible reason and it involves marijuana.
“A family friend who I trust, is well connected in law enforcement and was in Minny this week with local cops told me Butler missed curfew, got caught with weed when he came back late to hotel, and subsequently had a meltdown on coaches,” @JoeyPigskins tweeted.
A family friend who I trust, is well connected in law enforcement and was in Minny this week with local cops told me Butler missed curfew, got caught with weed when he came back late to hotel, and subsequently had a meltdown on coaches
— Joey Cartolano (@JoeyPigskins) February 5, 2018
What a strange development, indeed. Butler was the Patriots surprise Super Bowl hero, securing a game saving-interception against the Seattle Seahawks. And now he ends his New England journey as a Super Bowl bench-warming goat, in part because of some marijuana, which will be recreationally legal in Massachusetts this summer.