RE: CREZDON BUTLER
Cornerback - Clemson
5th Round – 164th Overall
Ray Horton:We traded with the Arizona Cardinals, to pick up Bryant McFadden who was originally a second round pick here. That adds instant depth to our team. As a rookie he helped us beat Indianapolis in a playoff game, and go to the Super Bowl. We feel that, that was a huge pick up for a fifth round pick, and we also picked up a sixth. That's something that we worked on for a while. Value wise we got an instant starting cornerback for a fifth round pick. We are very happy to have Bryant back. Then we got Crezdon Butler from Clemson University. He's a 5'11"- 6' corner that will come in and compete. He's big, he's strong and he's fast. That's what we need right now, we need guys that can come in and pick off the ball. With the addition of Bryant and Crezdon we feel our special teams will also get better.
Why was Arizona so willing to give him up for so little?
I don't know that's something that they would have to answer out there. All we know is that he's played well for us. Whether it was a style that they played, I didn't follow them. I'm not sure what their scheme is. Sometimes guys fit better in certain schemes. We understand what he is, and we are excited to have him back. Whether they asked him to do things that he couldn't do, you have to ask him that.
How much did you watch of him in the NFC Playoffs?
I personally didn't watch him at all. If we're not in it I don't care what people do. I know we followed him the year in the Super Bowl and he did well. What happened out there, I think the Arizona area code is 408 or 509 or something I don't know what the deal was out there. All I know is what he did for us, and he came in and played at a competitive level here.
Did you learn anything about William Gay last season?
I think if you talked to William directly he would say he became a little too full of himself. He split time with Bryant when he was here when Bryant had a couple of injuries and we went on to win the Super Bowl. I'm sure he thought I'm here, I've arrived. I think he's more humble this year and he's working hard.
Will William and Bryant share the position?
I don't know what it will be. I hope it lends itself to one guy stepping up and saying this is me, my job, I'm taking it. Hopefully we don't have to do that. If guys are playing well that we feel they deserve to be in, I wouldn't say no, but I would hope not.
Re: The trade being something that you were working on.
The last couple days it was in the works, whether that determined why we did or didn't do some things I don't know because you don't know if a trade is going to happen until it happens. It was something that was on our radar and we were excited on the defensive side of the ball for that.
If Maurkice Pouncey had not been there, were you guys looking at a cornerback with that pick?
It's hard to say who you were going to pick, because you don't know who is going to be there. We obviously going into the draft have needs to fill. As a casual fan you know offensive line, cornerback, defensive back was one of the areas, it looks like linebacker was also one of the areas if you look at our picks. We really target "the best player" and who that best player is depends on which pick it is. We would not pass on a good corner, safety or linebacker. In the first round you take the best player that is there.
With the two defensive backs that you took last year, do you feel you are where you want to be?
If we pick off the ball like we a capable, absolutely yes. We have some young kids that can run and play. The oldest corner right know I think is Ike (Taylor). We've upgraded youth and speed. We need to be more productive, and that's the bottom line.
Can you assess Keenan Lewis and Joe Burnett?
When you look at the first two days of OTA's Keenan has made tremendous strides, because he know understands the system. Our system is not an easy system to learn, we understand that. He struggled to learn, but now understands it. You can see that in his play he looks more natural and athletic. Joe Burnett is right where we expect him to be. He's a second-year player that should get better.