Having both won 2 Superbowls already and having iconic plays in them, Butler and Hightower may already have cemented their chances at the HOF so long as the both go on to have stellar careers, no matter where they play. I don't think they have to stay in NE to be considered possible future HOFers. They both need to make decisions that are best for them and their families first and foremost, and if that means leaving NE to get more money elsewhere, I wish them well. I hope they have unreal careers if they don't sign with NE, just so long as they suck when playing the Patriots.
Hightower and Butler both stand to make a lot of money in New England or another team. If they choose New England, they may make a little bit less (not extraordinarily), but possibly set themselves up as Hall of Fame type players because of being a part of a winning organization. Leaving now would really jeopardize that opportunity.
In general, I agree, but there are many factors at play. I think we should also be careful about not lionizing sports teams too much. This is the entertainment business. The NFL players are, at the end of the day, entertainers doing something that is very hard on their body. Hall of fame is nice and all, but if we are talking about $30M vs. $35M, I'm not going to fault someone for taking an extra $5M.
Oh, totally, money is huge and an NFL player's career can end at anytime; however, potential legendary status is up for grabs here. These things have a way of working themselves out anyway. If they choose New England, then they are choosing that Patriots way and we will all be happy. If they choose to leave, then we can always rationalize that they were all about the money and not winning.
I definitely hope they stick around for a while, though.
Definitely should do what's best for fsmily. Let's say the contract difference is 10 v. 12M a year and 30 v. 35M guaranteed. That's a lot of money (the discrepancy) but in neither case does his family go hungry. There have to be considerations that only he and his family can judge : Do they like their home, their town, their neighbors, their schools? What are the kids' ties to friendships? Do their kids have learning needs that their current schools understand? Are there other family members who rely on Dante? Are the Hightower's involved with local businesses? Does Mrs, H work locally? Is she tied to her work or local friendships?
It probably isn't always JUST about the money. But unfortunately, the fact that he's still interviewing, along with the probability that there is likely minimal (if any) leveraging that can be done to raise the Pats offer, I am guessing that the contributing considerations are leaning to an openness to be persuaded by the money.
Hope they don't lose him - especially not to the Steelers.