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An Open Letter to Mike Westhoff on Punt Returns

Dear Mike,

I understand your desire to put a big playmaker back to receive punts to try and break a big return. Please fight that urge. Stick with the sure handed Jerricho Cotchery. Teams cannot afford mistakes in Playoff football. Santonio Holmes and Antonio Cromartie have both shown a tendency to be careless near the ball. They have run near bouncing balls and pretended they were going to pick them up in traffic. Nothing good would ever come of this. It would not do the Jets any good even if the special teams units were going to pick up the ball. What could happen is the ball taking a bad hop and hitting the return man, who should be nowhere near the ball, resulting in a turnover.

I know Jerricho Cotchery isn't flashy, but he catches everything. He has also shown some good moves as a return man. His pedestrian return average is as much the result of bad blocking as anything. He might not be the homerun threat the other guys are, but he is also less likely to turn it over.

If the team is behind and in need of a big return, perhaps it would be all right to roll the dice with somebody else. Otherwise, stick with Jerricho.


John B