Coming off an impressive pro day where he increased most of his numbers from the combine, Vernon Butler continues to see rise in his draft stock like he has since season’s end. The Louisiana Tech defensive tackle prides himself on his athleticism and versatility. In a very deep class at the defensive tackle position, Butler will likely slide to the 2nd round, but seeing him go in the 1st certainly isn’t out of the question. Butler brings tremendous upside that a team is sure to fall in love with.
Name: Vernon Butler
College: Louisiana Tech
Projection: 2nd round
Comparison: Gerard Warren
Strengths: Formed from an NFL prototype with ideal height, weight distribution and body proportion. Long arms and huge hands. Extremely nimble and highly coordinated with no body stiffness. Comes off the ball quickly for his size. Has a lethal swim move and when his hands are working can move around interior linemen with ease. Has the ability to hold a double team. Active player who keeps working and rarely gives up on a play. Runs down the field with his teammates.
Weaknesses: Level of production was low. Does not jolt offensive linemen upon arrival. Rarely displays the power consistent of a 325-pound man against the lower-level competition he regularly played against. His opposition did not appear to fear him. Too often handled when single-teamed. Seemed too happy to play patty-cake and wasting valuable time. Violence appears lacking in his game. Although he hustled down the field became a willing observer when he got close to action.
Outlook: Vernon Butler is a bit of an enigma in that he looks like Tarzan and too often plays like Jane. His potential is enormous due to his physical skills but his tape shows a lack of power and violence you want to consistently see. Butler leaves you wanting more but you can’t help but want to see what he can become.