Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore’s push for a new contract is getting bolder with contract extension deadlines approaching and training camp on the horizon.
Gilmore’s absence from mandatory minicamp amid his contract dispute with the team and his social media post highlighting his exclusion from a list of the top-10 highest-earning cornerbacks spoke to his frustrations.
The 2019 Defensive Player of the Year reportedly told journalist Josina Anderson he is not seeking a trade from the Patriots and “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,” he added.
I just got off the phone with #Patriots CB Stephon Gilmore. On his contract situation: "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." He told me he's not looking to push for a trade adding...[Cont] 1/3— IG: JosinaAnderson (@JosinaAnderson) July 9, 2021
Gilmore’s original five-year, $65 million contract with the Patriots made him one of the higher-paid cornerbacks in the league at the time he signed it. But other contracts have since surpassed his $13 million-per-year average salary.
The Patriots also shifted $4.5 million of his remaining money to last year’s contract, leaving him at $7 million in base salary this year — the final season of his deal.
Gilmore, who turns 31 in September, did not attend the Patriots’ voluntary OTAs or mandatory minicamp.
“Hopefully we can find some common ground and get it situated,” he told Anderson. “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.”
Gilmore also offered some updates on his health, saying he’s “stronger than he’s ever felt” since undergoing surgery to repair a partially torn quad muscle and has resumed some full-speed running.
As for his readiness for training camp, he was more equivocal: “We’ll see; if I need to be. But I also don’t want to push it.”