Since his death on November 4, 2022, to a cause of death that has yet to be revealed, David Butz has been the talk of the town.
David Butz, who was born in the United States on June 23, 1950, is a well-known former professional soccer player.
David’s professional football career spanned over 16 years, and he spent that time as a defensive tackle for both the St. Louis Cardinals and the Washington Redskins.
His career lasted for 16 years, and in that time he missed only four games. Butz, who stood at 6 feet 8 inches and weighed close to 300 pounds, was one of the largest players in the NFL at the time.
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A Defense Stalwart From the 1980s, Dave Butz Has Passed Away at the Age of 72
Over the course of his extended NFL career, Dave Butz earned a reputation as something of a gentle giant, which he dispelled in the 1980s by becoming a terror to opposing quarterbacks.
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Butz retired after the 1988 season and claimed, “Every quarterback I hit knows I struck him.”
Washington’s NFL club announced Butz’s death on Friday. The big lineman was a key member of the team’s defense in the 1970s and 1980s when Washington won two Super Bowls. He was 72.
The reason for the death was never given.
Following an outstanding collegiate career at Purdue that earned him a spot in the College Football Hall of Fame, Butz was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the fifth round of the 1973 NFL draft. Butz only stayed with St. Louis for two seasons before leaving on bad terms (a hatred that would fester throughout his career with Washington, which then played the Cardinals twice a year as NFC East rivals).
Butz was legally a free agent, meaning he could sign with any team he pleased. However, per NFL rules at the time, any team signing a free agent was required to pay a signing bonus to the player’s previous team. That didn’t concern Washington coach George Allen, who in 1975 gave the Cardinals first and second-round draft picks in 1977 and 1978 in exchange for free agency quarterback Archie Manning.
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Allen would later refer to the deal as “one of the best transactions I ever made,” despite the fact that Butz arrived in Washington shortly after suffering a significant knee injury and would start only 18 of 42 games in his first three seasons with the Capitals. Butz developed into a consistent option at left tackle, starting the remaining games of his career.
Butz, who stood at 6 feet 7 and weighed more than 300 pounds (and wore cleats in the size 12EEEEEEE), eventually became Washington’s key run-stuffer. His helmet bore the marks of his annual battles with offensive linemen.
Soon, Butz’s pass-rush abilities would also emerge. Butz tied for second on the team with 4.5 sacks during the strike-shortened 1982 season, helping Washington capture its first Super Bowl title by holding the Miami Dolphins to 16 yards in the second half of Super Bowl XVII.
After being criticized for a lack of aggression, Butz had his best season ever the next year, leading the NFL with 11.5 sacks and was named to the Pro Bowl and the all-pro team for the first time in his career.
“If you mean do I have the ability to blindside a quarterback or hit him in the middle of the back as he’s throwing the ball, I have absolutely no problem with that at all,” Butz said of his techniques. To slam into him with a combined weight of 300 pounds, including 30 pounds of gear.
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Because “my difficulty is that I am so huge. When I reach my destination, I intend to deal a blow to him. But even if I had to hit the quarterback and knock him down or break his legs, I wouldn’t. Even so, I’d probably still strike him in the head.
Some quarterbacks’ collarbones are fractured, and I’ve dislocated a few shoulders. When [me and my teammate Karl Lorch] and I tackled that quarterback, I heard something crack. He tried to get up, but I told him, “Stay down; you’re hurt.”
Although, Butz became known as a mysterious player who was “equal parts serious and sensitive,” as Gary Pomerantz described in a 1984 story for The Washington Post.
Darryl Grant, who lined up to Butz’s right on Washington’s defensive line, said to Pomerantz, “He jokes around a lot, but sometimes it’s hard to tell.” When I don’t know how he’s feeling, I stay away from him.
Butz’s career sack total of 59 places him fifth all-time for Washington.
However, after a 1987 game against the New York Jets, nobody doubted Butz’s toughness. Butz had been admitted to an Arlington hospital to treat an intestinal infection, but he checked out the day of the game. Despite losing 26 pounds due to the virus, he finished with three tackles and a sack in Washington’s 17-16 triumph.
It was the first time in 15 years, he stated after the game, that he had weighed less than 300 pounds.
Butz recorded two tackles in Super Bowl XXII as the Washington Redskins defeated the Denver Broncos 42-10 to win their second Super Bowl in franchise history.
Dave Butz was a defensive tackle for the St. Louis Cardinals and Washington Redskins. During his 16-year career, he missed only four games.
He was a key member of the Redskins’ defense in the ’70s and ’80s when they won two Super Bowls. He was named to the Pro Bowl and all-pro team in 1982. Butz recorded two tackles in Super Bowl XXII as the Washington Redskins defeated the Denver Broncos 42-10.
After a 1987 game against the New York Jets, nobody doubted Butz’s toughness. Despite losing 26 pounds due to an intestinal infection, he finished with three tackles and a sack.
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