The New England Patriots have seen a bunch of former Buffalo Bills cornerback Stephon Gilmore in recent years, and now they'll have a chance to see him up close and personal. According to ESPN Insider Adam Schefter, Gilmore is expected to sign a five-year deal with New England when the league year opens later this afternoon. The deal is expected to be in the range of $14 million per year.
Gilmore, the No. 10 overall pick in 2012 out of the University of South Carolina, played his first five seasons in Buffalo before the two sides parted ways this offseason after not coming to terms on a long-term deal. He had a career-high five interceptions in 2016 and made his first Pro Bowl. He has played in 66 career games and has 14 career interceptions.
Patriots staying busy
In addition to the news of the Gilmore deal, word around the NFL is that the Patriots are staying quite busy. The team agreed to terms with veteran defensive tackle Alan Branch on a new two-year deal after playing a large role in New England's 2016 Super Bowl run.
Also, in relation to the Gilmore signing, rumors have trickled out about a possible trade involving another Pro Bowl cornerback in Malcolm Butler. According to ESPN's Diana Russini, the Patriots are considering trading Butler to the New Orleans Saints in exchange for wide receiver Brandin Cooks. Earlier in the week, New England offered the Saints the No. 32 overall pick in exchange for Cooks, but New Orleans declined.
Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports that the Saints plan to trade Cooks by the end of the day on Thursday.