Avoiding kickoff returners?

Posted by Darren Urban on November 11, 2010 – 10:04 am

Two of the best kickoff returners in the league will match up Sunday in the Cardinals-Seahawks game. Seattle’s Leon Washington leads the NFL with 31.4 yards per return, while LaRod Stephens-Howling is sixth in average (27.9) and has the most total yardage (1,060). Each has two touchdowns. Each have emerged as dangerous weapons for teams that have not had a lot of consistent offensive success.

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said last week, the Giants — who hammered Seattle — simply stopped letting Washington have the ball. “They did everything they could to kick the ball away from him,” Carroll said. “Which turns out to be great field position for us. We would love for him to get the ball in his hands and let him do his thing, but if they’re going to give us great field position … I think we started at the 36 (yard line) all game and that’s a good number.”

Stephens-Howling has been wondering if — when? — that will happen to him.

“That’s another thing we talk about in the meeting room and our whole return team has to be ready for that, to adjust on the run, because if we keep being this successful, they’re not going to continue to kick to us,” Stephens-Howling said. “We’ll probably see more ‘morter kicks’ around the 25- or 30-yard-line, trying to give it to one of the bigger guys.”

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17 Responses to “Avoiding kickoff returners?”

  1. By tRiGidY on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Vote LaRod Stephens-Howling Probowl!

    Lets go BigRed Lets beat the Sea-chickens!!

    Protect the Nest!!

  2. By MikeG on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Hey Darren–Good point on Howling–teams may start kicking away from him because of the respect factor. I hope the Cards’s can run the ball effective at home this week. Given Beanie’s limited play lately– Do you see Hypen used in the run game this week??? Maybe giving him–5 to 8 carries??? He’s earned it!!!

  3. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    MikeG —

    RE: LaRod

    We will see.

  4. By KyCardsfan on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Just out of curiosity, has the hyphen been practicing punt returns lately, or do u even see him becoming a punt returner for us?

  5. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    KyCards —

    RE: Punt returns/LaRod

    No and no. Roberts is the punt returner and I don’t see that changing.

  6. By tRiGidY on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Congrats LaRod for going over 1,000yrds! on 38 kickoffs

    Darren, can Steve Breaston start at QB for us Sunday??

    Happy Veterans Day to all are Soldiers! Thanks for Protecting are Freedom!

  7. By shoulvekeptmat on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    larod better make this probowl or else im gonna jump of my roof!

  8. By Pheenic Cromartie on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    C’mon Larod, score a TD, and prove you’re the best Kick Returner in the league!

    Let’s go Cards!

  9. By RobertF on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    It does not matter if we can’t get some 1st downs when we need it. Play to win, not to “not Lose”. somebody coach AW on how to cover a reciever.

  10. By MikeG on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Hey Darren– A Beanie question for you! It seems Beanie was never the same since that hit he took against the Redskins in the pre-season.. Seems he never rebounded from that. He had the surgery and certainly is not 100%. I don’t know if we can really count on him for consistent double digit carries the rest of this season. The injury seems like it is more than what the Card’s are leading on. That is why I think Hyphen has to contribute in the run game. Do you think the Beanie injury is a minor one? or a little more serious than everyone thinks???

  11. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    MikeG —

    RE: Beanie

    I can only go by what I am hearing. Beanie insists he is getting better, and he is just dealing with coming off knee surgery.

  12. By Bryan on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, I’m in the market for a new jersey haha.
    Am I safe to buy a Stephens-Howling jersey?What’s his contract look like and do you plan on seeing him be a Cardinal for awhile?

  13. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Bryan —

    RE: Jersey

    I think I’m not about to be the one to decide on any jersey purchases.

  14. By Shake on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    RE: Punt returns/LaRod

    “No and no. Roberts is the punt returner and I don’t see that changing.”

    Is Roberts spending some extra time working on punt returns?

  15. By Darren Urban on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    Shake —

    RE: Roberts/PR


  16. By jim_vh on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    the hyphen has the most yardage in part because he has the most returns – because the cards give up more scores than almost anyone else. Not sure this is a great stat to keep flogging. I would like to see the average go up some —

  17. By TBru on Nov 11, 2010 | Reply

    I have always avoided jersey’s you never know who is going to go bye bye or get arrested. It has always been my standing policy. I always thought Warner or Tillman would be the only jersey I would ever consider, based on their charachter. This past Christmas, my brother gave me a Cards jersey. I decided what the heck and decided to loosen up on my self imposed jersey ban. Of course he got me a Boldin.

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