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Monday, December 19, 2011
Top players on special teams

By Mike Reiss

DENVER -- Each week, the players who are part of multiple special teams units are highlighted in this space. Let's call a change-up today.

In addition to pointing out the core special teamers, here is a list of starters who play on at least one unit:

1. Kyle Arrington -- Lines up on kickoff coverage unit. Used to be a core special teamer but as his role on defense expanded, he played less in kicking game.

2. BenJarvus Green-Ellis -- Plays on the punt coverage and kickoff return units; probably not too many backs leading their team in rushing doing that.

3. Rob Gronkowski -- Part of the wedge on kickoff return unit, where his athleticism and power is ideal.

4. Devin McCourty -- Combination of size and speed is deemed an asset on kickoff coverage unit.

5. Rob Ninkovich -- Kickoff return unit and punt coverage, which is added to his growing responsibilities on defense.

6. Nate Solder -- Part of the wedge on kickoff return unit, where he provides a strong point of attack.

Now, a look at those players who were on multiple special teams units in the win over the Broncos:

Four units
LB Niko Koutouvides
S Ross Ventrone
LB Tracy White

Three units
WR/DB/LR/PR Julian Edelman (team-high 3 tackles)
WR Matthew Slater
RB Danny Woodhead

Two units
S Sergio Brown*
LB Dane Fletcher
RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis
CB Antwaun Molden
LB Rob Ninkovich

* Is the 12th man on punt return if team doesn't use two returners.