Cornerback Malcolm Butler wasn't even on the field when the Seahawks first huddled for the play that resulted in the Patriots' game-saving interception in Super Bowl XLIX.
NFL Films cinematographer Dave Malek and recordist Mark Ricci captured footage showing the Patriots originally aligned with their goal-line defense, featuring linebacker Akeem Ayers. Having noticed three wide receivers in the Seahawks' huddle, two assistant coaches adjusted, sending Butler in to replace Ayers.
NFL Media analyst Willie McGinest dissected the historic play on Tuesday's edition of NFL Total Access, highlighting the New England coaching staff's acumen in matching up with Seattle's personnel on the fly in a key moment.
Butler's preparation allowed him to jump the route with confidence and beat Ricardo Lockette to the spot, but the Patriots coaches also deserve credit for heeding Bill Belichick's primary pre-game directive.
Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels passed along Belichick's message to TheMMQB.com's Peter King: "It's a 60-minute football game, and whatever issues we have, let's make sure we correct them, coach them, and fix them. That's our job."
Butler was only in that nickel package because the coaches made the decision a quarter earlier to have the undrafted rookie replace a struggling Kyle Arrington. The Super Bowl hero was only on the field for the epic, legacy-shifting play because the coaches noticed an issue and corrected it.
The latest Around The NFL Podcast recaps Super Bowl XLIX, including Malcolm Butler's game-sealing interception, Tom Brady's legacy and more. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.