Friday, August 3, 2012
Jack Butler completes Hall of Fame journey
By Jamison Hensley
Of the six players who will be enshrined in the Hall of Fame this weekend, no one will appreciate this honor more than Jack Butler.
He is entering the Pro Football Hall of Fame after a 52-year wait. To put this in perspective, none of the other players who will be enshrined this year is older than 51.
Butler, 84, one of two senior nominees, was one of the best cornerbacks in the 1950s. His 52 interceptions were the second-most in the NFL at the time his career ended. His physical style defined Pittsburgh's defense long before "The Steel Curtain" arrived.
“Jack was one player who could have played with the great Steelers teams of the 1970s,” longtime Pittsburgh executive Dan Rooney said at the time Butler was elected into the Hall.
A college wide receiver, Butler developed into a four-time Pro Bowl defensive back and was named one of the 33 greatest Steelers of all time in 2008. A vicious knee injury ended his career in 1959, and he's had 10 operations on that knee since then.
Butler will long be remembered for being tough, smart, and of course, patient.
"I don't think it will really sink in until I get down there and take in the atmosphere," Butler said last week on going into the Hall of Fame. "Then it will probably hit me. Right now, I don't know. I just know it sounds pretty good."