Butler saw the same play in practice, and got beat


Before Patriots defensive back Malcolm Butler became the hero of Super Bowl XLIX, he was the goat of the identical play.

The New England scout team, working its job description to perfection, tried the same thing.  And Butler was beaten.

“I was at practice, and the scout team ran the same exact play,” Butler told Dan Patrick on Wednesday.  “And I got beat on it at practice because I gave ground. . . . Bill Belichick, he came and said to me, ‘Malcolm, you’ve gotta be on that.’”

On Sunday, Butler was on it.  Backed up to the end zone, there was no reason to give ground because there was no danger of letting the receiver get very far behind him.

The full interview with Butler appears below.  Congrats to Dan’s 35 producers for lining it up.

33 responses to “Butler saw the same play in practice, and got beat

  1. Shocked these teams Seattle and NE actually practiced plays and had a strategy. I agree with some analyst, Mike M really just has a plan in his mind (no one else knows what that plan is by the way) and does what abouts.

    I know they do like 1.5 hour practices in spring training. You can’t teach a young guy anything in that amount of time. Another reason Mike hates new people, he hates practicing. He is a lazy ass

  2. but with Wilson it was a perfect throw to pick off practically right to him and not to his receiver. Butler,Pats fans and everyone but Seattle says “thank-you Russell” and “great call ” and “great throw”.

  3. “The Patriots knew the play was coming, therefore cheated, therefore don’t deserve the superbowl.”

    -Every Troll Ever.

  4. That’s called great coaching — preparing the player for the game day situation, and the player being receptive to it. Without Belichick’s coach up, Super Bowl history might be a lot different.

    Similarly, in Super Bowl XLIII – Coach Tomlin saw the defender’s half-assing an interception return in practice, and coached that right out of them. In the game, James Harrison had that iconic pick six — and the convoy of blockers was amazing. Again, the practice coach-’em-up paid huge and likely outcome-determinative dividends on the biggest game of the season.

  5. Lockette didn’t even run a slant..he ran straight down the line. Is he really the receiver you want to throw to in that situation? Why aren’t they throwing to Baldwin or Kearse or even Matthews? Wilson never looked at the D once had the ball. Total lack of execution and horrible judgment by coaching staff,

  6. Aside from team preference there is nothing better than a personal story like this. Forget the arrests, this kid right here is what sports in general is all about. It is the great equalizer. And this kid made it against all odds.

    From what I’ve seen he is humble, a hard worker and had none of the luxuries of a major college football program as he played Community College & Division II. Joe Andruzzi, Danny Woodhead, Zach Moore & Malcolm Butler are just the ones that come to mind.

    Best story in the NFL for 2014-15.

  7. The play is more amazing as you hear more, like the fact that he was a late substitution

    Pretty cool how it all came together

  8. Butler made a hell of a play and that is lost in all the 12ers claiming they lost the game. butler won that game after everyone on earth thought the Hawks had won.

  9. Talk about clutch!!!
    He got coached up & did his job!!!
    Congratulations Pats!!!
    Wicked Awesome!!!

  10. Clearly shows that the primary failure was Bevell’s. When the defense knows which exact play you’re running, it’s because the offensive coordinator is being too predictable.

  11. He’s a humble guy. Actually, he had a number of excellent plays after coming in to the game to replace Arrington. The Seahawks went after him like the Pats went after Simon and except for the Kearse miracle catch he shut them down.

    Butler Island!

  12. This is one of the top reasons why Bill Belichick is the greatest coach of all time. He had the confidence to entrust the responsibility of stopping that play at the end of the Super Bowl to a backup CB who happened to have been an undrafted free agent from West Alabama University and they practiced it at training.
    The Defense improved big time with the acquisition of Revis and Browner. But the true genius of BB is in preparing a relative nobody to win big when it counted.

  13. I had heard the players praising the scout team a couple of days before the game, especially Garappollo.

    Practice, preparation, execution.

  14. Wait, by all reports Seattle did not run this play all year, and only once ran a similar play in week 3 with big personnel. How would they know to run the play on the scout team without inside information that it was in the game plan?

  15. Rookie Super Bowl Hero.

    A young, undrafted guy who watched the tapes; listened in practice; learned from past experiences; and came up with the biggest play in SB history. What a story!

  16. “And if you slip and fall … trip the receiver because the ref won’t call it.”

    Veteran play made by a rookie street free agent. The type the Raiders use to make.

    Come on man, if can’t you even appreciate the Butler Super Bowl story stop watching the NFL and find some other entertainment.

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