Patriots, James White agree to three-year contract extension

If you suspected the Patriots' recent backfield machinations cast doubt on the future of Super Bowl LI hero James White, think again. The move ensured that New England would receive a first-round pick as compensation if Butler signed an offer sheet with another team and the Patriots chose not to match.

"It varies year-to-year, but I would say our draft board is smaller than most", he said.

Also Tuesday, the Patriots announced the re-signing of tight end Matt Lengel, an exclusive-rights free agent, and the release of offensive guard Tre Jackson. The league could look to open Atlanta's new stadium while also adding a 2016 playoff team, which would include the Dolphins, Packers, or Cowboys. White was due to become a free agent after the 2018 season, so he'll be with the Patriots until 2021, assuming he isn't cut or traded.

Without a pick in the first two rounds of next week's draft, the Patriots are equipped with a pair of significant trade chips that could net them some quality ammunition in the early rounds.

The Patriots originally selected White in the fourth round of the 2014 draft out of Wisconsin with the intention of making him the team's next passing back in the mold of Kevin Faulk, Danny Woodhead and Shane Vereen. In other words, there are plenty of options if you're looking CB. "If people don't wanna go, they don't wanna go, and that's their choice".

In honor of this seventeen-year mark, here is a recap of every Super-Bowl-winning season that Tom Brady has had (so far). Trading Butler is an obvious way to get that pick back.

This past February, Brady said, "He just does everything right, and you can never get mad at him".

Another scenario is holding on to Butler for this season and pairing him with Gilmore in what would be one of the NFL's better 1-2 combinations.

The $3.91 million agreement makes him eligible to be traded.