With the NFL Draft over, teams have to look around different leagues to find players to fill out the roster. The revamped XFL is a solid place to start, and the Pittsburgh Steelers kept their eyes on Hakeem Butler.
The Steelers have reportedly offered Butler a spot at minicamp. Butler had a fantastic season with the St. Louis Battlehawks, catching 51 passes for 599 yards and a league-leading eight touchdowns.
This won’t be Butler’s first taste of the NFL. He spent 2019 and 2020 with three different teams. He suited up in two games with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2020 but did not catch a pass.
Butler was drafted in the fourth round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals after a solid college career at Iowa State. In his junior season in 2018, Butler caught 60 catches for 1,318 yards and nine touchdowns. He broke his hand in training camp before the 2019 season and missed his entire rookie year.
Seeing XFL players get a chance in the NFL is a good sign for football in the United States. While the XFL probably doesn’t want to be labeled as an NFL minor league (unless it came with the kicker of some revenue) they do celebrate the opportunities that their players get.
Hakeem Butler has NFL experience under his belt and now gets another chance at catching his first pass on an NFL field. He could carry his momentum from a great XFL season into summer workouts with the Steelers. The Steelers aren’t necessarily loaded at the wide receiver position, and Butler has some versatility as a tight end. He could have a real chance at making the Steelers roster.
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