BOSTON (CBS) — Any time a player holds out of mandatory minicamp, it’s a big deal. But it doesn’t necessarily spell the end of a relationship between the player and the team. Even when the Patriots are involved.

And the latest bit of reporting on Stephon Gilmore indicates that his dissatisfaction with his contract doesn’t seem to mean that his time in New England is over.

ESPN’s Mike Reiss included the following gauge of the situation on Gilmore in his Sunday column:

Cornerback Stephon Gilmore didn’t report to mandatory minicamp, and while some holdouts can become acrimonious, my sense on Gilmore’s mindset is different. He seems to enjoy being a Patriot, is open to sticking around, and this was his least-expensive-but-most-decisive way of sparking more productive contract talks with the team, so he can feel better about being part of New England’s present and future.

That is, quite obviously, not a concrete report on the situation. But the opinions of the well-connected Reiss are often more informed than he might let on, so  there’s a certain level of weight to his suggestion that Gilmore is not necessarily desperate for a ticket out of town.

Gilmore has one year left on his contract with a base salary of just $7 million, after the team took $5 million from his 2021 salary and paid it to him in 2020. He also carries a a cap hit of more than $16 million, so the Patriots may be motivated to rework the cornerback’s deal, too.

Gilmore, who will turn 31 years old in September, is coming off quadriceps surgery after having his season ended early last year.

CBSBoston.com Staff