Steelers Bubble Watch: P Drew Butler May Have Secured A Roster Spot

August 30, 2012; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham (6) kicks an extra point from the hold of Steelers punter Drew Butler (9) against during the first quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

Steelers P Drew Butler is putting pride back into the "Punters-Who-Wear-No.-9-For-The-Steelers" group.

After an impressive preseason in which Butler booted a 45.9 yard average, the maligned Steelers' special teams unit let him down on more than one occasion, leading to a middling 38.4 net average.

Both marks were just a little better than Jeremy Kapinos, the Steelers punter for the 2011 season, creating the distinct possibility Butler will be the third Steelers punter in three seasons.

Kapinos replaced oft-injured P Daniel Sepulveda, a former fourth-round draft pick, permanently last season, but didn't punt at all this preseason due to a back injury. While neither have anything on Sepulveda, who was clearly the best option of the three when healthy, Butler's average and the team's resulting net shows he's at least on the same level as Kapinos, and he's healthy.

Seems to be a recurring theme.

Translating those stats into reality, coverage has been more of the issue, something Tomlin clearly took exception with when he fired special teams coach Al Everest last week.

With final cuts coming by 9 p.m. ET today, it wouldn't be at all surprising if Butler gets the nod to punt in Denver Week 1.


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