Yeah, if Butler runs the ball out of the end zone, and then voluntarily runs back into it and is downed there, it's a safety.
The initial hit with Lockette was a big enough boom that he was actually knocked back into the end zone while making the catch. His first few steps are to pivot and set his momentum to go forward. Instead of doing that, he could have taken a knee and gotten a touchback. But, you know, given all the other baller, heads-up plays he made (including, you know, intercepting the pass to win the fucking Super Bowl), I'll excuse him on that one.
Reminded me of - who was it, Demaryius Thomas? - getting a similar drilling by Kam Chancellor in the previous year's super bowl, and basically turtling and not being the same after. Big hits from Chancellor are not for the faint of heart. And does Edelman carry on and hear footsteps and get shell-shocked? Fuck no. In the moment, he gathers himself and nearly breaks off another huge chunk of yardage. And later, he ends up catching the game-deciding TD on an incredible fake-out.
What a player he has made himself become.
That z-in square out pattern was the definition of a FREAK MOVE. Guy could only half-assedly look around for a pushoff flag, which he knew he wouldn't get.