Players to Watch: Deon Butler

Zachary HabnerCorrespondent IJuly 28, 2009

RENTON, WA - MAY 02:  Wide receiver Deon Butler #85 of the Seattle Seahawks in action during minicamp at the Seahawks' training facility on May 2, 2009 in Renton, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

My first article written for Seahawk Addicts.  Follow the link below to check out the new and improved web site.

We continue the "Players to Watch" segment with a profile of the Seahawks newest Nittany Lion: Deon Butler. Butler came to the Seahawks in the third round of this year's draft out of Penn State.

While at Penn State, Butler surpassed Bobby Engram for the most pass receptions in the history of the Nittany Lions. He isn't a very big wide receiver, measuring at 5'10" and weighing only 182 lbs. But what he lacks in size, he makes up for in speed. At the NFL Combine Butler, ran a 4.38 40-yard dash, fourth fastest amongst the wide receivers.

The Seahawks, in desperate need of WR help, selected Butler with the 91st pick in this year's NFL Draft. The Hawks, who had passed on Michael Crabtree higher in the draft, needed a game changing wide receiver to help free up newly acquired T.J. Houshmandzadeh and Nate Burleson. He also adds depth to a team that witnessed almost their entire starting WR core sustain injuries during the pre-season. 

Where would Butler fit in? If Butler can show consistency during training camp, he should definitely make this team as a fourth wide receiver option. He could also relieve Nate Burleson at split out, or he could even spell T.J. Houshmandzadeh in the slot. While unlikely, it is possible that Butler cracks the starting rotation by beating out either Nate Burleson or Deion Branch.

Why won't he make the team? There is a very slim chance he doesn't make the team. The depth behind Butler consists of Ben Obomanu, Courtney Taylor, Logan Payne, and Mike Hass. Not exactly Jerry Rice, Tim Brown, Randy Moss, or Terrell Owens. Butler would only not make the team if he shows the inconsistency of a Koren Robinson or Darrell Jackson (having a case of the dropsies).

Upside: He is a speedy receiver who catches the ball with his hands. He should remind Seahawks of a younger, faster Bobby Engram (as mentioned above, a fellow Nittany Lion). As far as his size, he could still be a matchup problem with bigger corners as he could provide a speedy distraction and pull the safety away from Houshmandzadeh or Branch.

Downside: Again I have to go with his size here. If he is matched up one on one with the bigger corner backs in this league, he could get pushed around making it difficult for him to get open.

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