Victor Butler, slated to be one of New Orleans’ starting outside linebackers in the team’s new 3-4 defense, tore an anterior cruciate ligament in one of his knees, according to the Times-Picayune's Larry Holder and the NFL Network.
Butler signed with New Orleans in free agency this offseason, following new defensive coordinator Rob Ryan from Dallas. The 25-year-old had been somewhat of an on-field coach for those players unused to Ryan’s 3-4 scheme having played in it for the past three seasons.
On Tuesday, the third-to-last day of team organized team activities, Butler collided with Mark Ingram after the running back caught a swing pass going to his right.
Butler immediately went to the ground, bent over in pain. Athletic trainers eventually aided the linebacker off the field, carrying him with his arms around their shoulders into the team’s main building from the indoor facility. Both coach Sean Payton and Ingram spent time making sure Butler was OK before getting back to practice.
After practice, Payton said that the two players “banged knees,” saying, “I think he is going to be fine actually, so we are fortunate.”
But less than 24 hours later, that appears to have been early wishful thinking.
It's likely that Butler will end on injured reserve. Linebacker Martez Wilson will now likely be in the hunt to take over for Butler at the position.