Former Green Bay Packers All-Pro safety LeRroy Butlerhas been reportedly invited to attend the 2012 NFL Draft at Radio City Musical Hall in New York City. Butler will be the Packers alumni player this year who announces Green Bay’s second-round pick, as NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announces all first-round selections.
This will be Butler’s first visit to the NFL Draft as he was not invited to attend in 1990, when he was selected by the Packers in the second round (48th overall). Butler thought he had what it takes to be a first-round selection but realized that was not going to happen when he never received an invitation from the NFL to be there in person.
Butler will finally get that opportunity 22 years later when he will be standing center stage behind the podium with the whole world watching. One very lucky player will not only have the honor of being drafted in the same round as Butler and meet the inventor of the Lambeau Leap, but they will become a member of the greatest franchise in NFL history.
The iconic Lambeau Leap that every Packer does as their touchdown celebration was invented by Butler on December 26, 1993 when Green Bay played host to the Los Angeles Raiders. Butler smashed into running back Randy Jordan and forced a fumble. The legend himself, Reggie White, recovered the fumble and began running towards the end zone. At the 25-yard-line White lateralled the football to Butler, who was so excited to score a touchdown he leaped into the arms of fans. Wide receiver Robert Brooks is credited with making the celebration popular by leaping completely into the stands. Current NFL rules do not allow players to celebrate with fans in this manner, with the exception of the Lambeau Leap as it is grandfathered in.
Butler was a phenomenal player for the Packers as he recorded 726 tackles, 38 interceptions, 20.5 sacks, 13 forced fumbles, 10 fumble recoveries and three defensive touchdowns in his 12-year career. He was also selected to four Pro Bowls (1993, 1996-98), a four-time All-Pro (1993, 1996-98), a member of the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team, a Super Bowl champion (XXXI) and is in the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame. He was the first defensive back in NFL history to have 20 sacks and 20 interceptions in a career.