Patriots' Stephon Gilmore Not Seeking Trade: I Want What I'm Worth in New Contract

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVJuly 9, 2021

New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore during an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Gillette Stadium, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020 in Foxborough, Mass. (Winslow Townson/AP Images for Panini)
Winslow Townson/AP Images for Panini

New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore isn't pushing for a trade, but he made it clear Friday that he wants a new contract.

Speaking to NFL insider Josina Anderson, Gilmore said: "I just want what I'm worth, however that plays out. Every player should be paid what they're worth. That’s just how it is."

Gilmore also told Anderson: "Hopefully we can find some common ground and get it situated. I just know what I bring to the table and my style of play. Right now I'm just trying to focus on myself and make sure I'm good mentally and physically."

After signing a five-year, $65 million contract with the Patriots in 2017, Gilmore is set to earn a base salary of $7 million in 2021 before becoming a free agent in 2022, per Spotrac.

Gilmore did not attend mandatory minicamp while awaiting a new contract, and it is unclear if he will be present for training camp.

Per Anderson, Gilmore provided a positive health update after undergoing offseason quad surgery and gave some potential insight into his training camp plans as well: "I feel stronger than I've ever felt since the surgery. I've been running a lot, building full speed. ... We'll see [if I'll be 100 percent ready for training camp]; if I need to be. But I also don't want to push it."

The 30-year-old Gilmore joined the Patriots after spending the first five seasons of his career with the AFC East rival Buffalo Bills, and it wasn't long before he established himself as an elite corner.

In his second season in New England, Gilmore was selected to the Pro Bowl for the second time in his career and named a First Team All-Pro for the first time.

He repeated those feats the following season and took it a step further, finishing with 53 tackles to go along with an NFL-high and personal-best six interceptions and 20 passes defended. He also returned two of those interceptions for touchdowns.

As a result, Gilmore was named NFL Defensive Player of the Year, becoming the first corner to win the award since Charles Woodson in 2009 and the first Patriots player to ever win it.

While expectations were high for Gilmore in 2020, he was limited to 11 games because of injury and finished with just 37 tackles and a career-low three passes defended and one interception.

The Pats suffered as a team as well, going just 7-9 and missing the playoffs for the first time since 2008.

There is hope among the Patriots faithful that they can bounce back in 2021 following the selection of quarterback Mac Jones in the first round of the draft, the signings of tight ends Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith, and the return of some key defensive players who opted out last season because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A healthy and productive Gilmore could go a long way toward getting the Pats back to the postseason, but the current indication is that he doesn't plan to report without a new deal.