Okudah is still recovering from an ankle injury that he suffered on August 4th. However, there was hope that Okudah might not miss any time at all. Arthur Smith told reporters that he’s optimistic but wouldn’t reveal whether or not he’d be ready for the season opener recently.
We haven’t received an update on Hughes, but it’s clear the Falcons aren’t expecting to have one or either of them available for Week 1 when the club opens the season in Atlanta against the Panthers because they’re hosting Patriots Super Bowl hero Malcolm Butler for a workout.
#Falcons are working out former #Patriots Super Bowl hero cornerback Malcolm Butler today, per a league source. Was with #Patriots last year coming out of retirement and worked out for #Dolphins last fall @KPRC2
— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) August 29, 2023
How there isn’t another viable option on the open market? I have no idea.
Butler hasn’t played in a regular season game since 2020, but who could forget the legendary moment that immortalized him in NFL lore? Against the Seahawks in the Super Bowl, he picked off Russell Wilson to seal the game.
Butler also played in another Super Bowl that Falcons fans might remember… we’ll leave that one be, though.
He went on to play for the Titans but never really lived up to his contract in Tennessee. Though his career doesn’t seem to be officially over, he’s recorded 17 interceptions and earned one Pro Bowl nod across seven seasons.
The Falcons cornerback room currently consists of A.J. Terrell, Tre Flowers, Dee Alford, Clark Phillips, and the injured Okudah and Hughes. One of Darren Hall, Cornell Armstrong, and Natrone Brooks could potentially squeeze out a roster spot, but Butler seems to be in the club’s plans in some fashion.
We’ll see if they end up signing Butler, but it’s pretty revealing that the club isn’t confident in Jeff Okudah or Mike Hughes being fully healthy for the season opener. Thankfully, Carolina doesn’t have stellar wide receivers and is dealing with injuries of their own.