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James Butler

Height: 6-2 | Weight: 213 | College: Georgia Tech
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Positives … Has a narrow frame, but shows adequate muscle definition and room for additional growth. … Plays with adequate field awareness, keeping plays in front of him. …

Has the quickness to stay close to tight ends and backs in the slot. … Shows flexibility in his hips coming out of his backpedal. … Possesses natural hands to make the interception in front of him and times his leaps well to extend and get to the ball in the air. … Plays with determination and makes all the secondary calls. … Does a good job of supporting the run, as he charges hard down the alley and is an effective wrap-up tackler. … Has some hand strength to shed when working near the line. … Has the short area burst to drop in the flat, find the receiver and attack the ball. … His loose hips allow him to turn quickly out of his backpedal and make plays on the deep ball.

Negatives … Good tackler, but needs to stay focused, as he will be seen just standing around the pile at times. … Even though he is a smart player, he still can be inconsistent and fooled by play action, as he tends to eye the backfield too much. … Will stay tight with the receiver in the short area, but just seems to lack a feel for routes, as he can get turned and lose position on good jukes and head fakes. … When he gets too high in his backpedal, his long legs prevent him from maintaining position. … Because he gets fooled by play action so much, he tries to play it safe by playing deep in the zone, but then he takes extra steps and will round his breaks when he has to step up and make plays on the ball. … Has more built-up speed than natural quickness, lacking the second gear needed to recover and make up ground when beaten. … Late to come up and support vs. the run and I question whether he has the toughness to play at the line, as he struggles too much trying to play off blocks. … More of a drag-down tackler, as he lacks the strength to secure. … Better tackler in close quarters, as he takes poor angles, resulting in missed opportunities in the open.

2004 Season

All-Atlantic Coast Conference first-team and ACC All-Academic football team pick …

Semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award … Ranked second in the ACC with five interceptions for 18 yards in returns … Started every game at free safety, setting a school season-record for defensive backs with 119 tackles (56 solos), including six stops for losses of 10 yards, topping the previous mark of 114 tackles by Cleve Pounds in 1984 … Deflected six passes, caused three fumbles and blocked a kick.

2003 GAME Analysis

Brigham Young … In his first career start, he responded with 13 tackles (5 solos) and a 1-yard interception return.

Auburn … Followed with an 11-tackle performance.

Florida State … Stopped tailback Greg Jones for a 3-yard loss, causing a fumble on that play and posted 7 tackles (4 solos).

Vanderbilt … Deflected two passes, intercepted another and registered 14 tackles (9 solos).

Wake Forest … Added 9 tackles (6 solos), including one that stopped tailback Chris Barclay behind the line of scrimmage and had an interception while also blocking a field goal try.

Maryland … Named ACC Defensive Back of the Week after intercepting two passes and recording 12 tackles (5 solos).

Duke … Followed with 11 tackles and two stops behind the line of scrimmage.

North Carolina … Deflected a pass and collected 9 tackles (4 solos).

Virginia … Registered a career-high 15 tackles (12 solos).

Tulsa (Humanitarian Bowl) … Made three tackles and broke up a pass.

2003 Season

Played in thirteen games as a reserve free safety … Recorded 19 tackles (13 solos) with a stop for a 3-yard loss and a pass deflection … Made four tackles vs. Clemson … Had his most productive game in the Silicon Valley Classic with a season-best six tackles with one tackle for loss vs. Fresno State.

2002 Season

Played mostly on special teams, recording 11 tackles (7 solos) with a forced fumble and two pass deflections … Had four tackles, a forced fumble and two pass break-ups vs. Navy and added three tackles vs. the Citadel.

Injury Report

No injuries reported.


Business Management/Building Construction major, twice earning Academic All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors … Son of James and Nadine Butler … Born James Oscar Butler, Jr., on 9/07/82 … Resides in Climax, Georgia.

High School

CAMPUS: 4.55 in the 40-yard dash … 315-pound bench press … 450-pound squat … 305-pound power clean … 44-inch vertical jump … 10'8" broad jump … 4.04 20-yard shuttle … 6.71 three-cone drill … Right-handed … 19/29 Wonderlic score. COMBINE: 4.65 in the 40-yard dash … 2.76 20-yard dash … 1.69 10-yard dash … 3.98 20-yard shuttle … 11.07 60-yard shuttle … 7.10 three-cone drill … 40.5-inch vertical jump … 10'7" broad jump … Bench-pressed 225 pounds 16 times … 33 3/8-inch arm length … 9 -inch hands … 19 Wonderlic score.


Attended Bainbridge (Climax, Ga.) High School, playing football for four years for coach Bob Christmas … Rated one of the Top fifty players in Georgia according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and named to Max Emfinger's Super 75 in Georgia as a senior …

Tabbed to the Border Wars Top 100 prospects in the South and to Prep Star's All-Southeast Region team … Also a Class AAAAA honorable mention All-State selection by the AJC and the Augusta Chronicle … .First-team All-Region and All-South Georgia choice … Made 69 tackles and two interceptions as a senior, and had 54 tackles and four interceptions as a junior … Also punted for three years and averaged almost 36 yards per kick … Excelled in track, winning the state championship in the triple jump as a sophomore.


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