New Orleans Saints linebacker Victor Butler reportedly will undergo surgery on June 18, 2013 to repair a torn ACL he suffered earlier this week. Butler’s injury is a devastating blow to the Saints as he was expected to be one of the starting outside linebackers this season.
Butler suffered the injury in a freak accident when he hit knees with running back Mark Ingram in practice this past Tuesday. Butler is obviously out for the entire season and will look for a return next season. This injury is very unfortunate because Butler was primed to have a breakout season his first year with the Saints.
As a rotational player for his entire career, Butler was showing flashes of greatness and given a starting role his production would have skyrocketed. However, this injury is a major setback not only for this season but also his career. Furthermore, losing Butler will definitely shake up the Saints’ defense in the upcoming season.
Butler was the only linebacker familiar with defensive coordinator Rob Ryan’s system, and now the linebacker corps will be learning a brand new system without a player familiar with it. However, these players are professional NFL players and it is their job to pick up a new defensive system, but it would have been nice to have Butler there leading the way.
With Butler out, it creates a prime opportunity for other linebackers to step up and earn the starting job. Linebacker Martez Wilson is the likely candidate to replace Butler on the defensive line. Wilson seems ready to start and the Butler injury could be a blessing in disguise if some other guys step up and have good seasons.