Denver Broncos TE Jake Butt Different Than Most Rookies

DETROIT, MI - SEPTEMBER 10: Tight end Jake Butt
DETROIT, MI - SEPTEMBER 10: Tight end Jake Butt /

The Denver Broncos tight ends lacked consistency over the years, but rookie Jake Butt is different than most to enter the league according to Mike McCoy.

Virgil Green is talented, but it never fully materialized on the field for the Denver Broncos. However, he is a tremendous blocker to open up the run game.

Jeff Heuerman has upside, but the health has dampened the expectations for him. The Denver Broncos traded for A.J. Derby from the enemy (New England Patriots).

After the slew of injures Rob Gronkowski sustained over the years, Robert Kraft is probably regretting trading Derby. With the Broncos, Derby is a receiving threat paralleling Owen Daniels or Joel Dreessen.

Fast forward to the 2017 NFL Draft, where the Broncos made one of the steals of the draft picking Jake Butt in the fifth round.

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Butt injured his ACL during his last season with the Michigan Wolverines. Every scout before the setback reiterated Butt is a first round caliber tight end. Turn the tape on, and it is easy to see why prognosticators loved his potential.

Butt is a savvy route runner as tight end and makes run blocking a priority. His understanding of finding soft spots in coverage parallels that of future Hall of Famer, Jason Witten. This helps make a quarterback comfortable knowing where a receiver/tight end will be at all times. It also helps to have hands like Butt. The sticky hands make Butt a very reliable target in the red zone and on third down. Right now, Butt is impressing offensive coordinator Mike McCoy.

McCoy praised the rookie stating about his mindset.

"“You wish every rookie had his mindset. Everybody’s different, but he’s different. The way he works and the way he prepares, I can’t wait for him to get out here.”Mike McCoy (quotes via Denver Broncos PR)"

Drafted by the Denver Broncos, many were unsure when Butt would take the field. The sights are close for the Broncos tight end. Everything is pointing to the Kansas City Chiefs for his first game action since the December Orange Bowl in 2016.

The Broncos coaches did understand it would take time, but the preparation is next level according to McCoy.

"“We understood when we drafted him it was going to take some time for him to get out here. He lives here. He’s here all the time watching film and doing extra things with [Tight Ends Coach] Geep [Chryst] up in the meeting rooms and asking questions all the time.”Mike McCoy"

This mentality should be an example for every rookie entering the league. Butt’s homework off-the-field places him in a great spot before his return. McCoy stated his entire process. Butt is in the facility during meetings taking notes, soaking up everything with the medical staff and has become a resident at the Broncos headquarters. The Michigan tight end even stayed after practices during Training Camp just to put in extra work.

"“You just love the way he works. He’s a great example for young players in the future to say, ‘Hey this is a great example to watch a young player and how to work.”Mike McCoy"

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The future for Jake Butt is incredibly bright. Comparing him to Jason Witten seems like a stretch; however, he is already proving to be unlike most rookies in preparations off the field. Butt’s preparation and mindset has him headed in the right direction.