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The New England Patriots have placed a first-round tender worth $3.91 million on cornerback Malcolm Butler, who is a restricted free agent this offseason, sources told Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald.
Butler had just finished a three-year, $1.53-million contract, so it’s a substantial pay increase for the 27-year-old, though still far below his market worth.
Under the tender, the Patriots have the right to match any offer for Butler. If they opt not to, New England receives a first-round pick.
Butler has cemented himself as a legitimate No. 1 cornerback with back-to-back strong seasons after he burst onto the scene with a game-winning interception in Super Bowl XLIX.