EAST RUTHERFORD NJ - OCTOBER 11: Antonio Cromartie #31 of the New York Jets makes a play on the ball in the endzone was ruled not an interception against the Minnesota Vikings at New Meadowlands Stadium on October 11 2010 in East Rutherford New Jersey. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Antonio Cromartie
Rex Ryan gave quite a laundry list of players who might return punts in place of Jim Leonhard.
We'll have a lot of options out there. We have a lot of guys that can return. You mentioned Joe McKnight and you have Kyle Wilson. Jerricho Cotchery (did it) last year. I think J-Co (Cotchery) could do it again if it's real windy. I know one thing, Jerricho will catch it, so I'm confident with him. We have guys like Santonio Holmes who have done it in the past and (Antonio) Cromartie. We have a lot of options there.
I keep waiting for Wilson to pop one. He has come close a few times and has looked elusive with the ball in his hands. If anything, the biggest issue is simply keeping his footing.
It's good to hear McKnight is working his way into the mix. He made a big play as a gunner on the punt coverage squad last week. If he has shown he has gotten over his fumbling issues, he might be a good choice. He is very dangerous in space. Think back to the return he had in preseason against Carolina.
Cotchery would be the logical guy for a situation where the team needed good hands out there and didn't care so much about getting a return. In other words, he would be Jim Leonhard 2.0.
I'm not so crazy about the idea of Holmes back there. He would be good, but he has become too big a part of the offense to risk. He has more value in the passing game than on returns.
I find Cromartie more tempting. I know the Jets need him in coverage. I know everybody under the sun will say "Jason Sehorn." He's just electric with the ball in his hands and would definitely add homerun potential. I understand it would be a gamble with a potential downside. It would also have upside. I'm not sure I'd want to see it full time, but I wouldn't mind seeing him back there if the team needed a spark.
Who is your choice on punt returns?
Kyle Wilson (108 votes)
Joe McKnight (91 votes)
Jerricho Cotchery (70 votes)
Santonio Holmes (43 votes)
Antonio Cromartie (31 votes)
343 total votes