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Detroit Lions rumors: Lions in a ‘two-team race’ for CB Malcolm Butler

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The Lions are reportedly interested in acquiring Malcolm Butler... or maybe not.

NFL: Atlanta Falcons at New England Patriots Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

We have already reached the point of the free agency period where we cannot possibly know who to trust. Despite reports earlier on that the Detroit Lions weren’t among those interested in Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler, NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo is reporting just the opposite. (h/t @minister_smiley)

According to a report filed live on NFL Network, the Lions are currently in a ‘two-team race’ for Butler. “The Detroit Lions expected to be one of the teams here that is going to make the strongest push for Malcolm Butler,” Garafolo said.

The other team in contention? The Houston Texans. Houston appears to be making a serious play for Butler, seeing as they lost A.J. Bouye to free agency last year. “Seems like it’s a two-team race right now,” Garafolo said.

However, there are various reports out there that Butler is drawing a lot of interest from other teams not named by Garafolo. ESPN’s Dianna Russini says the Saints are interested in him. NBC Sports Boston’s Michael Giardi says the Raiders are in contention, too. Not only does that mean Detroit could have more competition, but it could drive the price up for the 28-year-old corner.

UPDATE: Giardi is also reporting that the Lions are “quite interested.”

Though Butler’s time in New England came to an abrupt end, with him being surprisingly benched in the Super Bowl, Lions head coach Matt Patricia has nothing but respect for the cornerback. “I love Malcolm a lot,” Patricia told reporters at NFL Combine. “He’s like all my players, he’s like one of my sons. I want to make sure that he does everything to the best and I hope the best for him. And that’s really all I’m going to say about Malcolm.”

So is the interest in Butler for real? Is Patricia’s love for Butler enough to have him play alongside Darius Slay? Stay tuned.