Butler is first former UWA player in Super Bowl

rp_primary_Malcolm_Butler_Patriots_PhotoLIVINGSTON — New England Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler certainly isn’t the first football player from the University of West Alabama to play in the National Football League.

He will, however, be the first former Tiger to play on football’s largest stage when Butler and his New England Patriots teammates face the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX Sunday at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.

Including Butler from West Alabama, three college football programs in the state of Alabama will be represented in Sunday’s Big Game. Former Alabama linebacker Dont’a Hightower is Butler’s teammate at New England. Offensive linemen James Carpenter and receiver Kevin Norwood, both from Alabama, join backup quarterback Tavaris Jackson of Alabama State on the Seattle roster.

An undrafted free agent out of UWA in 2014, Butler has worked his way from NCAA Division II all-conference and All-America status to a role as a defensive contributor on a Patriots team gunning for its fourth Super Bowl title.

Butler has already been able to add 2014 AFC Champion to his list of accomplishments that include Gulf South Conference titles in 2012 and 2013. He was a BSN All-American in 2012 and 2013, as well as a two-time All-GSC performer.

Butler played in 15 regular season games for the Patriots this season, making 15 total tackles and defending three passes. He has made one tackle in the postseason while continuing to serve an apprenticeship under six-time Pro Bowler and 2009 AFC Defensive Player of the Year Darrelle Revis, who leads the NFL in passes defended since 2007.

Super Bowl XLIX kicks off Sunday at 5:30 CST and will be broadcast on NBC.