Cardinals’ Special Teams Discussion for 2019
It had been a nifty maneuver for the Cardinals to retain Jeff Rodgers, the SAINT coordinator who upgraded the unit’ s performance in every aspect other than placekicking. From the bottom of the little league in 2017 to 5th within 2018.
Andy Lee is definitely performing at an All-Pro level. In 36, he is showing no indications of regression, as evidenced by their 48. 6 yard average within 2018. Plus, he is about of the same quality a punter as there is within dropping punts inside the 20. Because of a two-year extension he authorized last June, he is under agreement with the Cardinals through the 2020 time of year.
Aaron Brewer is strong and steady— -and he wants to get downfield and mix up in punt coverage. Brewer is certainly 28 and is under contract by means of 2021.
Zane Gonzalez appeared to settle down late in the season because the team’ s kicker. A nagging groin injury, plus two important missed field goals early within the season, caused his release in the Cleveland Browns. At 23 he or she appears to have a bright future within Arizona. He made 7 associated with 9 field goals (both does not show for were beyond 50 yards) plus 5 of 6 on additional points. Of his 19 kickoffs, 12 were touchbacks and the seven returns averaged a paltry twenty. 3. On the third year of the rookie contract at $645K annually, the Cardinals are saving large numbers less than what they were paying Phil Dawson.
The Cardinals possess three legitimate home run dangers as punt returners. Pharoh Cooper heads into his 4th period with a Pro-Bowl under his belt and a 2017 All-Pro award. For your Cardinals late last season he or she returned 6 punts for 67 yards, for an average of eleven. 2 . Most of that was gained on the breathtaking 65 yard return he previously versus the Seahawks in Week seventeen.
Christian Kirk broke away to get a 44 yard punt return previously in the season and finished along with 169 yards on 21 profits for a 7. 8 average.
Tanker Peterson ripped off a 16 backyard punt return last year and appeared more aggressive on that event. He finished the season with a seven. 1 average on 9 profits.
It took a while for your coaches to see that Brandon Williams was not the answer as the kickoff come back man. He averaged 19. two yards per 10 returns. Right after T. J. Logan took over, the device improved. He averaged 24. seven yards on 12 returns having a long of 36.
Punt plus Kickoff Coverage:
The coverage products were improved in 2018. The particular kickoff return coverage held competitors to a mere 21. 4 back yards per return, while the punt insurance coverage teams earned a net typical of 42. 6, holding the particular opponents’ punt return average in order to 6 yards.
The standouts within coverage tackles were Zeke Turner, Dennis Gardeck , Edmonds, Joe Walker and Derrick Coleman .
The best highlight of the coverage teams arrived on a rare punt block TD— -the type of which we haven’ t seen in years— -thanks in order to DE Cameron Malveaux’s prevent and LB Dennis Gardeck’s recovery in the end zone. Here it really is:
The auspicious news for the Cardinals is Jeff Rodgers returning because ST coordinator and all three professionals (Lee, Brewer, Gonzalez), the top come back men (Cooper, Kirk, Logan, Peterson) and four of the top SAINT tacklers (Turner, Gardeck, Walker, Edmonds), plus the punt blocker (Malveaux). Rodgers’ turning of the Cardinals’ once woeful STs into a strength has been a good encouraging development.
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