With the Houston Texans making some tough decisions, the NFL waits for nobody and the Texans are adjusting on the fly. After a magical 2011 season which brought the franchise’s first division title, playoff appearance and win, the Texans appeared ready for a big 2012 season with a deep roster. With the cap issues that hit the Texans, a once deep roster has to fill the voids left by players who left for other teams via free agency.
After Eric Winston was cut loose for cap purposes, the spotlight quickly turned to the 6’4″ 317 lb. swing tackle Rashad Butler to see if he was going to be the new right tackle. With a new right side of the line developing before our eyes, Butler will be an important part in the Texans’ new look offensive line. Butler will be taking the place of a familiar face in Winston who was one of the better run blockers in the NFL, but his pass protection was something that seemed to slip the past few seasons. Leading the offensive line in penalties and sacks given up, Winston was considered expendable.
Butler was drafted in the 2006 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers in the 3rd round out of the University of Miami (89th overall) and was inactive his entire rookie season with the Panthers. After weight issues, Butler was released by the Panthers during the 2007 training camp and the Houston Texans were there waiting for him. Butler had issues with keeping weight on and the Texans discovered Butler had ulcerative colitis, which was the cause of the weight issues. The Texans’ medical staff was able to get the condition under control and Butler regained the weight that he had previously lost.
Returning home to West Palm Beach for a trip home, Rashad visited a doctor, curious of his light weight. The doctor discovered Butler suffered from a rare intestinal disease called ulcerative colitis. Ulcerative colitis is a form of inflammatory bowel disease. Approximately 1 in 10,000 Americans suffer from this disease. “When I got it, I thought it was just some virus that would pass over, with no medications. I’m glad they discovered it and got me on some permanent medication to control that.” This disease raised eyebrows once again in Houston. “They were surprised because they didn’t know anything about it, from meeting with me at the combine, they didn’t know what it was, and they were surprised just like me.”
Taken from Rashad Butler: The Man behind the Mask By: Dolphan9954
Butler found a home in Houston and was tagged the swing tackle and has 4 games at left tackle filling in for the suspended Duane Brown during the 2010 season. Not known to be a road grader in the run game, Butler is an above average pass protector but more snaps could allow Butler the opportunity he has been waiting for, to be a starter for the 2012 season. Butler will have to prove that he can take on a full season with no set backs. He is coming off a season-ending triceps injury suffered during practice that landed him on the injured reserve for the 2011 season.
No matter what has happened in the past, it will be Butler’s position to lose and he has shown in those previous 4 games that he can get the job done. Butler is another player for the 2012 season that the Texans will depend on. He with Antoine Caldwell will have to prove they can keep the offensive line one of the league’s best in 2012.
You can follow Patrick on Twitter, he is the Editor of State of the Texans, and is a draft analyst on Sideline Scouting.