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Free-agent CB Stephon Gilmore still 'waiting for the right opportunity' ahead of Year 13

Waves of free agency have come and washed away.

Stephon Gilmore remains looking for a team, but heading into his age-34 season the veteran cornerback is comfortable taking his time.

"Being patient right now," Gilmore said Wednesday at the red carpet of Tom Brady's Patriots Hall of Fame ceremony, per "I feel good, Year 13, been playing a long time. So I'm just being patient and waiting for the right opportunity."

Gilmore's career has trended nomadic in the past three years. After splitting his first nine and a half NFL campaigns between the Bills and Patriots, he spent a half season with the Panthers in 2021 before donning Colts and Cowboys colors for a year each.

His finest seasons were for Buffalo and New England -- especially 2016 with the Bills, when he collected five interceptions to reach his first Pro Bowl, and his 2019 Defensive Player of the Year season with the Pats in which he had a league-leading six picks and made first-team All-Pro a second straight time.

But he's played admirably at every stop, a football mercenary capable of delivering poise and composure to a secondary.

He made a Pro Bowl for Carolina, his fifth overall, despite playing just nine games, and had two interceptions and a then-career high 66 tackles for Indianapolis. He followed that up in 2023 with another two-interception season while logging 68 tackles to reset his career high in Dallas.

Now he waits to contribute his services again.

At No. 16, Gilmore is the highest-ranked player remaining on Gregg Rosenthal's top 101 free agents. He sports 140 career passes defensed, and his 31 interceptions are sixth-most among active players.

With organized team activities and minicamps over, it's possible a team will sign him in the window before training camp. Suitors might also later look to him should an injury occur either in practice or a preseason contest. That's the waiting game aging vets play -- even successful ones -- as evidenced by three of the players ahead of him on the active INT list also being available.

Given his presence at Brady's Patriots Hall of Fame ceremony, the question of a reunion with New England did arise. Although the two parties experienced a contentious end, and Gilmore noted he's not had contact with the Pats this offseason, he didn't squash such a possibility.

"You never know," he said. "I'll weigh any options. This is a place that I played great ball, so just letting it play out how it's gonna be."

Be it New England or elsewhere, Gilmore's track record suggests he still has plenty to offer wherever he winds up next.

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