Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Brice Butler has undeniable physical talent. That much is obvious to anybody that watches him play. If you ask Butler himself, though, he’ll tell you that he has always had the ability to be an elite NFL wide receiver.
“In the offseason, I did a lot of soul-searching, mirror-looking and talking to myself to figure out what I need to do to take it to the next level,” Butler said in an interview with Brooke Cersosimo of NFL.com. “I’ve always known, being in the same class as Julio [Jones] and A.J. [Green], that I can put up numbers like them. I just wasn’t doing it. For a long time in college and my first couple of years in the league, I used to try to point the blame, like it’s politics or they’re trippin’ out. But after this offseason and how free agency worked out, I was like, ‘All right, you gotta grow up and figure out that it can’t be everybody. You were at Oakland and it didn’t work out. You were at USC in college and it didn’t work out. You’re in Dallas the first few years and you didn’t get the contract you thought you’d be getting at this point in your career.’ It had to be something I was doing or not doing. It couldn’t be anybody else.”
To his credit, Butler shouldered the blame and owned up to the shortcomings of his college and NFL careers. At the same time, comparing himself to Jones and Green, who are widely considered to be two of the top-five wide receivers in the league, is not only bold, it’s also outlandish.
Butler is on pace to have by far the best season of his five-year NFL career in 2017. Through five games, he has 8 receptions for 207 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Those numbers put him on pace to finish the season with 26 receptions for 663 yards and 7 touchdowns. If Butler plans on putting up Green and Jones-type of numbers, he would need at least three times as many receptions and at least twice as many yards.
Butler’s confidence is admirable. But when it comes down to it, it’s hard to take what he said seriously.
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