Stephon Gilmore discusses the sudden trade from Patriots to Panthers

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Stephon Gilmore can finally view the future with some certainty.

The star cornerback was traded by the New England Patriots on Wednesday to the Carolina Panthers for a 2023 sixth-round pick. Gilmore, 31, was recovering from a quad injury all offseason and reportedly couldn’t come an agreement with the Patriots on restructured contract for the 2021 season.

Whether it was entirely due to the injury or the contract situation, Gilmore landed on the PUP list to miss the first six weeks of the season. His time to make a return to NFL action was rounding the corner and now it’ll be in a Carolina jersey.

Gilmore, for the first time being traded, spoke to reporters on Thursday about the move.

“It’s no hard feelings,” Gilmore said, transcribed by WEEI. “It’s business. It happens all the time. I had good years there, and I’m happy to be a Panther now.”

Gilmore was originally getting released by the Patriots, but found out from Bill Belichick before the move was official at 4 p.m. that he was getting traded to the Panthers.

“It’s been a crazy 24 hours,” Gilmore said. “From sitting in the meeting room, to talking to Bill to getting traded to flying down here. So it’s been a crazy 24 hours, but it’s over now. I’m looking forward to the future.”

Now, it’s time to prove that he’s healthy enough to play at the level he was before — which will come from his actions on the field.

“I’m just trying to go out and get on the field,” he said. “Once I get on the field, everything will take care of itself. I believe in that. You’ve got to go out and make plays and show what you can do. … We haven’t really talked about (a potential extension) yet. That stuff will (work) itself out. I’ve just got to make sure I handle my business and try to do whatever I can to get back out there and make plays.”

The Patriots are now sitting with J.C Jackson, Jalen Mills, Jonathan Jones, Joejuan Williams and Shaun Wade at cornerback.