Butt’s Knee Feeling Fine, Reps Increasing

Michigan sophomore tight end Jake Butt had a highlight reel catch a week ago in a loss at Rutgers. Feeling little effects from off-season knee surgery, Butt is seeing an increase in reps and hopes it translates into more production.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- In just a season and a half of action, Michigan sophomore tight end Jake Butt has already made his fair share of highlight plays.

In Saturday’s 26-24 loss at Rutgers, Butt made one of the better catches of the year for the Wolverines.

Late in the first quarter, senior quarterback Devin Gardner stepping up into the pocket with No. 88 surrounded by defenders deep in Rutgers territory, Gardner fires the ball over the middle. Butt diving, reaching out with his left hand, somehow securing the football for a 20-yard gain down at the Rutgers five-yard line.

Watching it on film, Butt impressed himself a little bit too.

“That was pretty sweet,” Butt said. “It was pretty cool. And my buddy texted me cause I was like number three on the top 10 plays. I never watched it so that was pretty cool too.”

“That was probably one of my better ones, behind Northwestern last year,” added Butt. “I prefer two hands but it’s good to get some style points.”

Butt’s catch would eventually lead to a Gardner rushing touchdown from four-yards out early in the second quarter to give Michigan a 10-6 advantage.

Unfortunately for Butt that was his only catch of the game as he continues to become a bigger part of Michigan’s offensive game plan.

After jumping on the field for the first time this season in a loss at Notre Dame, Butt says his knee isn’t giving him any issue, also up to snuff from a conditioning standpoint.

“I played soccer my whole life so I’m used to running a lot so I’m always in pretty good shape,” Butt said. “The main thing was would my knee handle more and more reps and more game reps and it’s held up pretty well.”

Butt now has seven catches for 96-yards and a touchdown in five games in 2014.

As far as his production goes, the hope is to see more and more balls thrown his way with six games to go in the Big Ten and Penn State up next on Saturday night.

“I feel great,” Butt said. “And my number of reps has been more these past two weeks than it ever was in any of the games last season and I think I’ve handled it really well.

“You’re going to be banged up just because it’s football but physically I feel great.”

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