Next to the now-empty locker where Richard Marshall was once housed — his name plate was already gone Thursday morning — Crezdon Butler sat, having finished another rehab workout, knowing that he may have lost a neighbor but gained an opportunity.
“I would say that,” Butler said. “I’m just trying to get back 100 percent.”
Marshall left as a free agent Wednesday night. Butler, along with fellow rehabber Greg Toler, are among the pieces to replace him. If you don’t know much about Butler — or even remember he was on the team — that’s OK. He was a blip on the radar screen for many. Butler was claimed off of waivers Sept. 5 after the Steelers cut him. He played in the season opener against the Panthers, but in practice the next week, he went down with a dislocated ankle, wrecking the ligaments inside. He wasn’t put on injured reserve until Sept. 20, but almost from the moment it happened the Cards knew he was probably done for the season.
At that point, having been with the Cards for about 10 days before the injury, “I didn’t get to really talk to everybody,” Butler said. “I didn’t even meet all the coaches yet.”
That’s not a problem anymore. He didn’t go home, which, given his surgery, he could have done at least for a little while. He stuck around, met all those people he had not yet. He began working out with Brett Fischer. Now he expects to be back for OTAs, has been studying the playbook at home and getting ready for multiple positions: cornerback, nickel back, and “a little safety.”
“We’ll see,” Butler added.
Butler said he has a “bond” with defensive coordinator Ray Horton, no surprise since Horton was his defensive backs coach in Pittsburgh. He’s also gotten to be good friends with Toler, himself coming off major knee surgery and probably the key component in the Marshall decision (the Cards didn’t match the Dolphins’ offer). A healthy Toler — which must be shown on the field, of course — could change outlooks when it comes to Marshall’s departure, and the Cards are undoubtedly counting on it.
“We have been working so hard, pushing to get back to where we were before our injuries,” Butler said. “I guess (fans) will have to wait and see because we can’t say how good or bad it will feel when we get out there.”
Tags: Crezdon Butler, Greg Toler
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