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View Full Version : Should Eric Decker return punts?


maven
09-18-2012, 12:04 AM
poll coming...

maven
09-18-2012, 12:06 AM
Okay no poll coming, I forgot how to do it.

I say yes. More explosive and a chance to take it to the house. Leonard is slow back there.

Action
09-18-2012, 12:06 AM
poll coming...

No, not worth risking injury.

Leonard is the best possession punt returner we've really ever had. Him and Welker are equivalent when it comes to maintaining possession off a punt.

I remember Rex Ryan saying he'd trust Leonard catching a punt in a blizzard.

He also doesn't really provide a home run threat... he's faster but he he's still not fast.

maher_tyler
09-18-2012, 12:07 AM
No, not worth risking injury.

Leonard is the best possession punt returner we've really ever had. Him and Welker are equivalent when it comes to maintaining possession off a punt.

I remember Rex Ryan saying he'd trust Leonard catching a punt in a blizzard.

I agree with this. Unless we need a big return..kinda the way the did it tonight.

maven
09-18-2012, 12:08 AM
No, not worth risking injury.

Leonard is the best possession punt returner we've really ever had. Him and Welker are equivalent when it comes to maintaining possession off a punt.

I remember Rex Ryan saying he'd trust Leonard catching a punt in a blizzard.

I hate this logic. Put him back there. Like last year Royal should've returned every punt. Patrick Peterson returns punts. Why not use Decker to do it?

Action
09-18-2012, 12:13 AM
I hate this logic. Put him back there. Like last year Royal should've returned every punt. Patrick Peterson returns punts. Why not use Decker to do it?

Peterson is a punt return specialist... so is Royal. Those are part of of their resume...

Decker is not a punt returner.

The way they did it tonight was good...

If anything I'd rather have Matt Willis back there.

SoCalBronco
09-18-2012, 12:16 AM
Except that Leonhard hasn't shown us anything yet....except that he's slow as hell on the return. It was almost like Brooking trying to return a punt. I agree that Decker is too valuable, so yeah, as noted by others above, that kinda leaves Matt Willis.

Vegas_Bronco
09-18-2012, 12:17 AM
Punt return in general needs to be 100% replaced. Their blocking sucked and this needs to be a big part of our team as well as our defense plays. Drop leonard and go get a true returner.

We have an amazing punter, great fg kicker and are missing out on 5-6 plays a game w/out a decent return man.

Action
09-18-2012, 12:19 AM
Leonard isn't there to be a home run threat or to gain huge yards... it's evident by how slow he is. He's there with the idea to keep possession of the ball... He catches the punt cleaner than anyone I've seen on the Broncos.

But yeah, we do need a punt returner... Leonard isn't getting cut, he actually gets reps on defense.

maven
09-18-2012, 12:24 AM
We have an amazing punter, great fg kicker and are missing out on 5-6 plays a game w/out a decent return man.

Yep, start Decker.

:twokisses

Bacchus
09-18-2012, 12:52 AM
might as well he isn't doing much else.

ZONA
09-18-2012, 01:13 AM
I don't like either of the 2 on punt return. And to say Leonard is back there because he's not going to drop the ball then you're conceding any type of threat of a return, which is weak. You no longer get to return kicks anymore basically so the punt return is really the only place now that you can make a big special teams play, it's a great chance to flip field position. It's no so much that Leonard is slow, he's just catching the ball and trotting for the fist 2 seconds. Get the ball and go, figure it out on the way. You can't sit there for 2 or 3 seconds and slowly walk or trot trying to figure out where you want to go. You just have to get going, and then figure it out.

Action
09-18-2012, 01:57 AM
I don't like either of the 2 on punt return. And to say Leonard is back there because he's not going to drop the ball then you're conceding any type of threat of a return, which is weak. You no longer get to return kicks anymore basically so the punt return is really the only place now that you can make a big special teams play, it's a great chance to flip field position. It's no so much that Leonard is slow, he's just catching the ball and trotting for the fist 2 seconds. Get the ball and go, figure it out on the way. You can't sit there for 2 or 3 seconds and slowly walk or trot trying to figure out where you want to go. You just have to get going, and then figure it out.

Yes, we pretty much are conceding on PR... we tried to find someone on the current roster in the pre-season but with ball security being #1 objective, everyone failed.


So yeah, PR is a spot we need to address... but with our current roster, the smartest thing to do is what we've been doing.

Archer81
09-18-2012, 03:08 AM
I prefer he only return punts if the situation (like tonight) warrants it.

Otherwise keep his sexy ass on offense only.

:Broncos:

rmsanger
09-18-2012, 07:30 AM
either one seems to be better than the douche returning kickoffs!

lolcopter
09-18-2012, 07:41 AM
He can't catch any passes so he might as well return punts

TheChamp24
09-18-2012, 08:49 AM
It is absolutely stupid IMO to not put a punt return threat out there because of the possibility of an injury. Like folks the past few years with Royal, them not wanting him returning due to the injury risk even though Royal was pretty freakin good returning punts.

Put Decker back there and have an actual threat returning punts. Leonard is slower than molasses back there.

edog24
09-18-2012, 09:00 AM
IMO that's the best way to utilize him. He won't cut it at WR with his size as a #2, he showed that last year and he is showing it again, seems like more of a slot guy. I would hope Willis can step up and be #2 but it looks like we are stuck with pretty boy the rest of the year.

Jekyll15Hyde
09-18-2012, 09:13 AM
Hes better than Leonard but this WR corp cant afford an injury.

Hillman anyone?

SonOfLe-loLang
09-18-2012, 09:23 AM
I dont really care as long as whoever is back there doesnt drop them

ColoradoDarin
09-18-2012, 09:23 AM
I have never understood why teams don't throw a 5-6th rounder at a PR specialist who will be a 5th WR.

Smiling Assassin27
09-18-2012, 09:51 AM
This is why i was shocked to see Syd Quan let go. The guy was electric on punt returns and can do much more than Leonhard at half his age. What's Perrish Cox doing these days?

Leonhard is no longer a viable safety but was signed as a veteran presence. We can do better at PR, IMO.

Dedhed
09-18-2012, 11:26 AM
Yes, we pretty much are conceding on PR... we tried to find someone on the current roster in the pre-season but with ball security being #1 objective, everyone failed.


So yeah, PR is a spot we need to address... but with our current roster, the smartest thing to do is what we've been doing.Exactly right. With Peyton Manning running the offense it would be stupid not to make securing possession the #1 priority on punt returns.

This is another case of the OM overreacting to everything. You don't risk possessing the ball for the 1 in 200 chance at a huge return. It makes no sense.

razorwire77
09-18-2012, 11:30 AM
I just don't get why this team struggles with finding a returner. You can't tell me that there isn't some 5th round draft pick with wheels stashed on some team's practice squad that can return punts.

TheChamp24
09-18-2012, 11:40 AM
I don't buy into the stupid thought Leonard is better at catching punts than Decker as well.
As well as the injury thing.

BroncoBeavis
09-18-2012, 11:44 AM
Wouldn't mind it so much if he'd just catch the ball and get up field for as much as he can. Watching him try to turn the corner last night in the face of guys who can probably run circles around him was kinda painful.

If he wants to be the security blanket returner he just needs to be who he is.

Dedhed
09-18-2012, 11:47 AM
I don't buy into the stupid thought Leonard is better at catching punts than Decker as well.
Leonard hasn't fumbled on a punt return in 4 years.

SouthStndJunkie
09-18-2012, 11:47 AM
Although I may be faster than Jim Leonhard these days, I still don't think it's a good idea to use Eric Decker on punt returns.

He is too valuable to the offense and he stands a good chance of getting injured if we throw him out there as the punt returner.

If Eric Decker were super durable, I might go along with it, but he is an injury waiting to happen.

Pisses me off that Eric Page blew out his knee....he would have been the perfect return man for this team.

Beantown Bronco
09-18-2012, 11:48 AM
I have never understood why teams don't throw a 5-6th rounder at a PR specialist who will be a 5th WR.

Ummm, but they do....don't they? I know the Broncos always seemed to do it under Shanny (guys like Kasper, Madise, etc), but they never seemed to work out. The only times we ever seemed to have real success was when we drafted guys early that were starters at their positions, but also did the kick/punt return thing: Eddie Royal and Deltha O'Neal are the obvious favorites here.

TheChamp24
09-18-2012, 11:48 AM
Leonard hasn't fumbled on a punt return in 4 years.

How many times has Decker fumbled on a punt return?
How many times did Eddie Royal fumble on a punt return?

razorwire77
09-18-2012, 11:49 AM
Honey Badger, 5th round, 2013 supplemental draft.

maven
09-18-2012, 12:03 PM
Exactly right. With Peyton Manning running the offense it would be stupid not to make securing possession the #1 priority on punt returns.

This is another case of the OM overreacting to everything. You don't risk possessing the ball for the 1 in 200 chance at a huge return. It makes no sense.

Leonard hasn't fumbled on a punt return in 4 years.

How many fumbles has Decker lost on PR? Any how is slow ass Jimmy any better than catching a freaking ball than Decker?

And If slow ass Jimmy was so good, how come he was replaced at a critical moment of the game by Decker?

This nonsense of injury is stupid. Royal should have returned all punts last year. Same this year with Decker.

Dedhed
09-18-2012, 12:05 PM
How many times has Decker fumbled on a punt return?
How many times did Eddie Royal fumble on a punt return?

Deckers ball control issues have been consistently on display, including last night.

Not sure what Royal has to do with this discussion. Last I checked he wasn't on the team.

broncosteven
09-18-2012, 12:06 PM
Save Decker or Willis for desperation time, Leonard is fine as long as he is getting 5-9 yards or not muffing.

Our ST's is the best it has been in years. They are not the problem.

Dedhed
09-18-2012, 12:10 PM
Any how is slow ass Jimmy any better than catching a freaking ball than Decker?By catching it more consistently. Not too difficult to figure out.

And If slow ass Jimmy was so good, how come he was replaced at a critical moment of the game by Decker?Because at that point in the game it made sense to go for a home run, and with the punter in his own end zone the returners has a much better chance at a return. Again, not too difficult to figure out.

This nonsense of injury is stupid. Royal should have returned all punts last year.
Again, not sure what Royal has to do with this conversation, and I haven't given any credence to the injury argument.

BroncoBeavis
09-18-2012, 01:22 PM
Ummm, but they do....don't they? I know the Broncos always seemed to do it under Shanny (guys like Kasper, Madise, etc), but they never seemed to work out. The only times we ever seemed to have real success was when we drafted guys early that were starters at their positions, but also did the kick/punt return thing: Eddie Royal and Deltha O'Neal are the obvious favorites here.

If I remember right, Rod returned a lot of punts. I was never a fan of that either though.

lolcopter
09-18-2012, 01:31 PM
Although I may be faster than Jim Leonhard these days, I still don't think it's a good idea to use Eric Decker on punt returns.

He is too valuable to the offense and he stands a good chance of getting injured if we throw him out there as the punt returner.

If Eric Decker were super durable, I might go along with it, but he is an injury waiting to happen.

Pisses me off that Eric Page blew out his knee....he would have been the perfect return man for this team.

http://i0.kym-cdn.com/entries/icons/original/000/006/026/futuramafry.jpg

Action
09-18-2012, 01:37 PM
You guys do realize Eddie Royal missed 4 games due to injury last year correct? he had a nagging groin problem last year... so yes, the injury argument is valid.

Eric Decker isn't even a huge threat to BEGIN with... do you guys see how he runs? He's always prone to taking huge hits...

This thread is ridiculous

Action
09-18-2012, 01:39 PM
And If slow ass Jimmy was so good, how come he was replaced at a critical moment of the game by Decker?


I think everyone who agrees with the way things are being done has also agreed that Decker should come in during those type of situations.

Also, it was on a short field (they were punting from the endzone)...They had most of their ST blocking.

TheReverend
09-18-2012, 01:45 PM
Although I may be faster than Jim Leonhard these days, I still don't think it's a good idea to use Eric Decker on punt returns.

He is too valuable to the offense and he stands a good chance of getting injured if we throw him out there as the punt returner.

If Eric Decker were super durable, I might go along with it, but he is an injury waiting to happen.

Pisses me off that Eric Page blew out his knee....he would have been the perfect return man for this team.

That's a good point. Without Decker out there dropping passes, how could we possibly move the football?

The Joker
09-18-2012, 02:07 PM
We could do with finding a faster player for when we have teams punting from deep.

Leonhard is ideal when teams are punting from anywhere beyond their own 30 yard line or so, because they generally aren't really returnable and it's all about ball security which Leonhard excels at.

Having someone who could take one to the house would be great.

Action
09-18-2012, 02:09 PM
We could do with finding a faster player for when we have teams punting from deep.

Leonhard is ideal when teams are punting from anywhere beyond their own 30 yard line or so, because they generally aren't really returnable and it's all about ball security which Leonhard excels at.

Having someone who could take one to the house would be great.

We did pick up a college FA for that too, Eric Page... too bad he got injured.

Beantown Bronco
09-18-2012, 02:14 PM
You guys do realize Eddie Royal missed 4 games due to injury last year correct? he had a nagging groin problem last year... so yes, the injury argument is valid.

The injury argument is only valid if he got hurt returning punts. He didn't.

The whole "special teams/injury" thing is ridiculous. You'd think punt returners were going down with season ending injuries on a daily basis or something. They're not. Not even close.

A guy is no more likely to get hurt returning punts than he is doing anything else.

SouthStndJunkie
09-18-2012, 02:21 PM
Eric Decker is a big susceptible target at 6'3 and leaving him back for punt return is asking for an injury.

He's got a history of leg and foot injuries as it is.

Sure, he took one to the house last season, but it's not like he is the best punt returner in the league.

Jim Leonhard might be able to be timed with a sun dial, but at least he is sure handed and fearless.

Tom G
09-18-2012, 02:25 PM
As mentioned above, Hillman deserves consideration. He didn't do return work in college probably because he was such a workhorse RB. He's reasonably fast (4.44 combine speed) and elusive but jury's out on his hands and ball security.

Action
09-18-2012, 02:35 PM
The injury argument is only valid if he got hurt returning punts. He didn't.

The whole "special teams/injury" thing is ridiculous. You'd think punt returners were going down with season ending injuries on a daily basis or something. They're not. Not even close.

A guy is no more likely to get hurt returning punts than he is doing anything else.

He was hurt in general, it doesn't matter why he was hurt... if he was 100% I'm sure he would have been back there, that's my point.

Beantown Bronco
09-18-2012, 02:47 PM
He was hurt in general, it doesn't matter why he was hurt... if he was 100% I'm sure he would have been back there, that's my point.

Ummm, well, that's a different argument entirely.

The "injury argument" I'm referring to is this: people don't want a starter returning punts because they think there is some additional injury risk to it and they don't want to subject a starter to said risk.

I'm arguing that there is no additional risk to returning punts than there is catching a pass, so if they're the best at it, they should do it whether they're a starter or a bench warmer.

razorwire77
09-18-2012, 02:49 PM
As mentioned above, Hillman deserves consideration. He didn't do return work in college probably because he was such a workhorse RB. He's reasonably fast (4.44 combine speed) and elusive but jury's out on his hands and ball security.

Hillman got a ton of work at SDSU. It wasn't a split backs, or even change of pace back scenario. He was the running game. Did he get any PR/KR work in camp to determine his hands and reactions in the return game?

Action
09-18-2012, 02:53 PM
Ummm, well, that's a different argument entirely.

The "injury argument" I'm referring to is this: people don't want a starter returning punts because they think there is some additional injury risk to it and they don't want to subject a starter to said risk.

I'm arguing that there is no additional risk to returning punts than there is catching a pass, so if they're the best at it, they should do it whether they're a starter or a bench warmer.

You said it yourself,

"A guy is no more likely to get hurt returning punts than he is doing anything else."

1 play in the NFL is a big deal. In a billion dollar business, every play is a huge deal... so yes, every coaching staff takes injury into consideration when talking about punt returners and KR.

Desean Jackson is no longer the Eagles PR, but he is by far the best one on their team. I'm sure he will get looks in crucial situations when they "need" a big play.

The logic being used here is, that every team should just put their best home run player at PR, and this doesn't happen at all with any team in the league. Victor Cruz isn't the Giants PR.

With your argument, we should have DT back there and not Decker.

Beantown Bronco
09-18-2012, 02:56 PM
The logic being used here is, that every team should just put their best home run player at PR, and this doesn't happen at all with any team in the league. Victor Cruz isn't the Giants PR.

With your argument, we should have DT back there and not Decker.

No, no, no. That IS NOT my argument.

Best playmaker DOES NOT necessarily equal best punt returner. Punt returning is a very unique skill that not all "playmakers" have.

Action
09-18-2012, 02:58 PM
It seems like people think in terms of Madden... this isn't Madden.

The #1 objective is to maintain possession... it isn't as easy as pressing the fair catch button or running away from the ball. How many times have we seen in an NFL game across ALL Teams, a player botch a catch? These can literally be TURNING POINTS of a game.

Hillman will not be returning punts... it's one of those things, you can do it in practice but once it's real time, it's a whole new monster.

Action
09-18-2012, 03:02 PM
No, no, no. That IS NOT my argument.

Best playmaker DOES NOT necessarily equal best punt returner. Punt returning is a very unique skill that not all "playmakers" have.

And here's the thing, Decker doesn't even have the skill set to be a PR, so I'm not sure where we are getting with this. I do agree, it is a unique skill set.

But again, as I said, Desean Jackson isn't the PR for the Eagles... it's obvious that injuries are something teams take into consideration.

Unless PR is your speciality, it is not worth putting someone back there.

Leonard has been doing this for almost his whole career...

Beantown Bronco
09-18-2012, 03:12 PM
And here's the thing, Decker doesn't even have the skill set to be a PR

Ummmm, what? Apparently, the Broncos coaches didn't get that memo. Not to mention Decker. He looked pretty damn good doing it last year. Especially on that 90 yarder.

Action
09-18-2012, 03:20 PM
Ummmm, what? Apparently, the Broncos coaches didn't get that memo. Not to mention Decker. He looked pretty damn good doing it last year. Especially on that 90 yarder.

That was the 1st game of the season, where he was the designated PR. There was only 1 other time during the season where he was a PR and that was for 1 play. So in a 16 game season, that's really nothing.

If he was a great specialist at it, he'd possibly be doing it... POSSIBLY... but as a vital part of the offense, it's a risk...

Again, I've yet to see you comment on the Desean Jackson and the Eagles so I'm sure you see the point by now.

broncosteven
09-18-2012, 03:23 PM
That's a good point. Without Decker out there dropping passes, how could we possibly move the football?

If Decker didn't get held past 10 yards downfield he makes that one deep catch. He got chucked and no one called it.

bronco militia
09-18-2012, 03:24 PM
every now and then is ok (like Rod Smith).

maven
09-18-2012, 04:04 PM
So what if Decker is big? He can make plays.

Decker took it 90 yards for a TD last year.

Jimmy is sure handed and fearless? What Decker can't catch a f'n ball back there? Jimmy has never returned a kick for a TD in the NFL.

BroncoBeavis
09-18-2012, 04:24 PM
So what if Decker is big? He can make plays.

Decker took it 90 yards for a TD last year.

Jimmy is sure handed and fearless? What Decker can't catch a f'n ball back there? Jimmy has never returned a kick for a TD in the NFL.

If our staff had any brains they'd put Champ in. I know because that's how you took it to the house in 2k5.

BroncoMan4ever
09-18-2012, 04:35 PM
Okay no poll coming, I forgot how to do it.

I say yes. More explosive and a chance to take it to the house. Leonard is slow back there.

Leonard runs to much east and west looking for a crease instead of heading upfield. Decker is a pick a spot and run north and south. Decker is an upgrade but I don't want him risking injury in returns

Tombstone RJ
09-18-2012, 04:45 PM
this team is in complete shambles. everyone panic. Force Decker to return punts! Play Twighlight and sit the old brokedick QB! Get a new coaching staff! Fire Elway! Light hair on fire and dance around. Jump up and jump down. jump.jump.jump.jump.jump.jump...

Action
09-18-2012, 05:35 PM
Is there any starter in the league that returns punts outside of Patrick Peterson? (I haven't done much research, but if you find a team that's at the bottom of the league, then you're not really winning any point)

Beantown Bronco
09-19-2012, 07:29 AM
Pacman Jones and Josh Cribbs off the top of my head.

There are a bunch more if you include kick returners.

TheReverend
09-19-2012, 07:35 AM
If Decker didn't get held past 10 yards downfield he makes that one deep catch. He got chucked and no one called it.

Yeah, that's probably it....

http://imageshack.us/a/img577/9312/screenshot20120918at237.png

DivineLegion
09-19-2012, 08:00 AM
Gator arms...errr...Gopher holed it.

teknic
09-19-2012, 01:57 PM
No, Decker should not return punts.

The first reason that he should not is because he's a starting WR. Don't risk injury to a starter at a position with little depth. The second reason is that Decker can't even hold onto the ball in the passing game, so I would expect the number of fumbles on returns to increase significantly if Decker was the returner.

maven
09-23-2012, 05:22 PM
Leonard still sucks returning punts

broncosteven
09-23-2012, 05:59 PM
Decker is stupid and can't catch

lolcopter
09-23-2012, 06:31 PM
Wtf was with that slide you pussy ass bitch

Gtfo

Agamemnon
09-23-2012, 07:18 PM
Why aren't we using an actual dynamic athlete to return punts? Decker is better than Leonhard, but he's still not really shifty or fast enough to excel at the job. We might as well just fair catch every punt at this point.

broncosteven
09-23-2012, 07:23 PM
Why aren't we using an actual dynamic athlete to return punts? Decker is better than Leonhard, but he's still not really shifty or fast enough to excel at the job. We might as well just fair catch every punt at this point.

Because we don't have any on our team. Who is there other than Hillman that you can think of?

Put Hillman back there when he has never done it is asking for even more trouble. Plus he had some nice vision and was a one cut runner but he didn't do anything that screamed he was going to be an explosive player in the league.

We have to stick with Slow Honkey and dumb Honkey for this year.

houghtam
09-23-2012, 07:28 PM
Yeah, that's probably it....

http://imageshack.us/a/img577/9312/screenshot20120918at237.png

LOL pwn

broncos-rock
09-23-2012, 08:02 PM
this team is in complete shambles. everyone panic. Force Decker to return punts! Play Twighlight and sit the old brokedick QB! Get a new coaching staff! Fire Elway! Light hair on fire and dance around. Jump up and jump down. jump.jump.jump.jump.jump.jump...

I love it! I thought people commenting on the game thread were on full melt down:welcome:

edog24
09-23-2012, 08:06 PM
Decker is not good. On a more talented team he would be lucky to be the punt returner. On this team, he is the #2 which is ridiculous. If Willis could play half decent he should be the #2, Decker is a bum.

Abqbronco
09-23-2012, 08:54 PM
If Decker didn't get held past 10 yards downfield he drops that one deep catch. He got chucked and no one called it.

Fixed for reality

houghtam
09-23-2012, 08:55 PM
Fixed for reality

If you look closely at the fans in the background on that photo, you can see they're screaming "if only he hadn't gotten interfered with he'd have a chance to catch this ball" and not "this guy sucks and doesn't have a snowball's chance in hell of catching the ball."

Abqbronco
09-23-2012, 08:57 PM
I think Decker as a punt returner is a great idea. Catching the punt in the end zone and burning up time to get to the 15 at the end of the game was genius. I'd put it up there with "The Slide" or perhaps the pass he bounced off his face in end zone for the assist. Decker was straight up awesome tonight.