Bill Belichick on Stephon Gilmore: We mutually agreed to part ways

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick is holding a press conference on Wednesday afternoon and it’s likely to include questions about the team’s decision to move forward without cornerback Stephon Gilmore.

Belichick released a statement about that decision shortly before the press conference and it’s likely that he’ll point to that as his answer for any questions related to the veteran cornerback’s departure.

“I am grateful to Stephon Gilmore for his significant contributions to our team,” Belichick said. “It was a privilege and pleasure to coach Steph, I appreciate him for the true professional and class act that he is and wish him all the best in the future. Following discussions over a long period of time, we mutually agreed to part ways today.”

If the Patriots want to release Gilmore, there’s no need for a mutual agreement. A trade is also possible until his release is officially announced and a report on Wednesday indicated the Patriots might be looking to go that route. Gilmore could refuse to report to another team, but a deal could work if Gilmore and the Pats are on the same page.

Either way, Gilmore’s time in New England is up and it’s just a question of where he will be playing next.