What does Malcolm Butler think of Bill Belichick anyway?

Malcolm Butler on his new coach, Mike Vrabel: “… he says what’s supposed to be said when other people wouldn’t say it. That’s what I like about him.” 

NFL Nation reporter Cameron Wolfe sat down with new Tennessee Titans defensive back Malcolm Butler, who won two Super Bowls with the New England Patriots, for a rapid-fire Q&A:

CW: I’m going to mention key players, coaches and NFL figures you’ve been around. Tell me the first thing that comes to your mind.

MB: OK

CW: [Titans cornerback] Logan Ryan?

MB: Technician, smart, good footwork. He just knows the game. His player recognition should be, like, 98. He’s just very smart, man. Great guy, too.

CW: [Titans running back] Dion Lewis?

MB: Dion is funny, but we know he’s a great player. Explosive. He’s a little guy, but he’s not a little guy.

CW: [Titans coach] Mike Vrabel?

MB: Very happy guy. Bittersweet, he got some good and bad to him. He might be tough, he might be sweet to you, but his way of balancing — he says what’s supposed to be said when other people wouldn’t say it. That’s what I like about him.

CW: [Titans defensive coordinator] Dean Pees?

MB: Oh, man, that’s my guy right there, man. Real calm guy, he just wants you to play good football and explains the defense well.

CW: [Titans quarterback] Marcus Mariota?

MB: He’s quiet. I can’t get a jump on him, but you know he’ll speak to me every time we’re in the locker room, and I speak to him. Great guy, man. He can run, he can throw, but he can take a lick, too. Great guy.

CW: [Patriots quarterback] Tom Brady?

MB: Great guy, competitor. Always walking around with a binder or something with plays, with tiles. He’s doing anything he’s got to do to be prepared. And great guy, too. Everybody’s a great guy.

CW: [Patriots tight end Rob] Gronkowski?

MB: Gronk, aww man. Rob Gronkowski, he’s … Rob Gronkowski. There only could be one Rob Gronkowski, and you’ll have to meet him to really understand what I’m saying. Gronk’s a funny guy.

CW: [Patriots coach] Bill Belichick?

MB: There only could be one Bill Belichick. Business. Business, honest business and responsibility.

CW: [Patriots owner] Robert Kraft?

MB: Robert Kraft, that’s my dude right there. You would think Mr. Kraft works a 9-to-5 just by his soul, his image and his personality. Real great guy.

CW: Favorite teammate you’ve ever played with?

MB: It can be high school, college, anything? I got to say Logan Ryan. I say Logan Ryan. Because we on the same team but we still competing with each other, too, and it’s great, man. It’s business, fun, we all-around. We know each other all the way around the board.

CW: Safe to say he played a significant role in getting you to Tennessee?

MB: Yeah, I’ll say that, I’ll say that. And yeah, I say that. And people probably vouch for me and things like that. So, yeah.

CW: Top five cornerbacks in the NFL?

MB: Can I do seven?

CW: OK, we’ll do seven. It’s your show.

MB: I go with Jalen Ramsey. I like A.J. Bouye, Patrick Peterson, Stephon Gilmore, Casey [Hayward] from San Diego, you just got to respect those guys. Aqib Talib, Richard Sherman.

CW: Toughest guy you’ve ever had to guard?

MB: I would say Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders.

CW: What was your welcome-to-the-NFL moment?

MB: Mike Wallace, he scored the first touchdown on one hand. I think it was the half was gonna end, we was playing Miami. This is when he was with Miami, and I was young, I was one of the fastest guys. They’re like, “You stick him.” So, you know, I wasn’t getting that much playing time in. Quarter gonna end, I’m side-by-side with him. I’m like, “They’re not gonna throw this.” And I looked back and he one hand, they score before the half. … And I was sitting there, I was on the side for a while. Situational football, no better than that.

CW: Favorite moment in the NFL?

MB: I would say Super Bowl XLIX, but I’ll just say my first day being in the NFL. When I made the trials, when I got the opportunity, that’s my favorite moment.

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