Saturday, September 18, 2010
Is Devin Hester still dangerous?
By Calvin Watkins
Chicago Bears wide receiver/return man Devin Hester has the potential to break a punt return for big yards.
Over the last three seasons, Hester hasn't been in double-digits in punt return yardage.
Sunday, Hester brings his speed and movements to Cowboys Stadium when the Bears face the Cowboys.
Besides dealing with the Cowboys' videoboard, which stretches between the 20-yard lines, and Mat McBriar's booming punts, the Cowboys' special teams have young players who struggled in the season opener at Washington.
Kicker David Buehler led the special teams unit with two tackles. That's not good.
Hester scored seven touchdowns combined on punt returns in 2006 and 2007 and had 21 returns over 20 plus yards in the same time span. But he has failed to score a touchdown or get a return over 20 yards the last three years, which also includes the season opener against Detroit, where he averaged 3.4 yards a return. It should be noted Hester had a 17-yard punt return against the Lions.
Hester's low numbers could be attributed to nagging injuries and moving full-time to wide receiver. Since doing that in 2008, his punt return numbers have decreased.
The Cowboys have to be careful with Hester, who has the ability break one for a touchdown. With the Cowboys struggling offense -- yeah, we're counting the first-team struggles from the preseason -- special teams will play a major role on Sunday.