Jacksonville native and former Lee High School and Florida State star LeRoy Butler was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday. This is his acceptance speech.
“Well Blair [Buswell]… Blair who did my bust, he’s a real genius. That guy’s amazing. There’s no way I can make it look like that. And thanks for the haircut, Blair. DJ Khaled said it best, God did. Shout out to Drake and Lil Baby. If you you don’t know the song you must get the internet, people.
When you play for the Green Bay Packers, a lot of doors open up. When you win Super Bowl, all doors open up. But when you make the Hall of Fame, football heaven opens up. You want to know why? Just guess. It’s rare company. Its only 362 guys in the Hall of Fame. And I number 357.
WATCH: LeRoy Butler’s full Hall of Fame speech | RELATED: ‘It’s worth the wait’: LeRoy Butler takes his place in Hall of Fame
Growing up in Jacksonville humble beginnings. Thank you, Duval. Duval County was amazing.
But my mom growing up in poverty, she made us think rich every day because it’s not about what you have on or what you have, it’s how you act. My siblings were amazing. My sister, platinum. Vikki. My brother, Michael, my brother Darion and my brother, Doug. They were great siblings to a special needs kid like me. But I want to thank my uncle, Charles Durham. He’s the one that came over one day and said ‘you’re trying out for sports.’ And he taught me everything I know. I love your uncle, Charles Durham.
My kids. I have six daughters and a son. I know y’all feel bad for me. Sharon, who actually couldn’t come because she’s having my fifth grandchild. Don’t I look good to be 54? It depends on the angle though. So, leave me alone.
L’Oreal Butler. I named her when I saw cosmetics. I woke up, I said ‘L’Oreal. That’s her name.’ Gabrielle Butler, that’s my model. Someday, I hope she get a modeling contract to help me out because daddy a’int got no money. Help me! Danielle, that’s my IT. She’s the who even told me about TikTok. Maria, that’s my little diva. I love her. Siera. That’s the only one of my kids that’s actually taller than me so I don’t stand by her.
Now, they say you’re not supposed to say your favorite, but my favorite is my son, LeRoy Butler IV. Just don’t tell the other kids.
My teachers were great. I want to talk about Hammond Gracy. He’s the one said play both sports, don’t worry about it. Just play. Miss Gordon. She’s my algebra teacher. If she could teach me algebra, she’s great, right?
So, I love my teacher and all teachers. My high school coach is Coach Corky Rogers, the winningest coach in Florida history. Coach Belger, Coach Warner and Leon Barrett. He’s the one who [who told me] stop smiling so much to be tough. But I can’t, Coach.
But my life changed at Florida State. I was a Prop 48. Coach Bobby Bowden drives into the inner city into the projects. I said ‘Coach, you can’t just drive up in here. You got to ease your way down.’
I’m telling Miss Butler, I’m giving your baby a scholarship. Coach Andrews, get well soon. I love Coach. Couldn’t make it a day. Coach be going upstairs and hurt stuff we don’t have. Sit down and watch the speech, Coach. My life changed with the Packers. Now I’m one of the few guys up here and maybe the only guy up here to say I don’t go and say hello to fans at Pick N’ Save, I say hello to owners.
So, when Bob Harlan called me and said we’re gonna select you in the second round, it meant a lot to me. I love me [Packers PR director] Lee Remmel. He’s the one who took the call for me. Mike Holmgren, who I hope one day will be up here. I really do. He changed my life. And again, y’all just saw my wife. She beautiful. And all she got to do is deal with the kids and keep them away from me.
Nope, talk to your mom. But again, I want to thank the fans. Without you, there is no LeRoy Butler. And again, my teammates. You saw Gilbert Brown. My teammates. I love y’all. Where can you go, the ultimate team sport, I can have a bad game and every now and then; don’t Google it. And my other 10 teammates carried me. So my, teammates I love them.
And in closing, the volunteers. I’ve met all 2,000 of you, maybe took 3,000 selfies. I love you. Respect you. To the voters. Thank you. Sixteen years is a long time but it’s worth the wait. Thank you very much.”