Making the case for Elijah McGuire as ST returner
The New York Jets for the past few years still haven’t had a consistent and speedy threat when it comes to their kickoff and punt returner. Here’s the case for running back Elijah McGuire to make the position thrive again.
When the New York Jets selected running back Elijah McGuire in the 2017 NFL Draft, it was a smart decision in the grand scheme of things. McGuire brings some serious stats to the table and has great speed, finesse, and a knack for scoring touchdowns.
Last season, the special teams unit of the Jets left much to the imagination. They got nothing right and once again, failed to score a single touchdown either from a kickoff or punt return. The Jets didn’t have any consistency when it came to their returners and well, lost good field positioning due to a lack of focus and execution.
This time around once training camp is officially here, the Jets are expected to extensively try out many candidates to find a new returner on special teams. By the looks of it, McGuire should be one of those candidates and showcase his talents to make a serious case to start at the position.
In his entire collegiate career at Louisiana-Lafayette, McGuire truly made a name for himself. He put on quite a show every single time he was on the gridiron. As a running back, he totaled 4,301 rushing yards, 710 attempts, and 42 touchdowns.
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As a receiving option, McGuire totaled 1,394 yards, 130 receptions, and 10 touchdowns. McGuire also saw some work as a returner on special teams where he averaged 15.3 yards per kickoff return.
While he didn’t score any touchdowns on special teams, the talent is there to use his speed to put the Jets in a better situation when it comes to field positioning.
The truth of the matter is, McGuire is going to be a force to reckon with once he gets used to life in the NFL. At this point in time, it’s hard to predict how the Jets will ultimately use him but if they utilize his skill-set in various ways, he will be an x-factor in football games due to everything he brings to the table.
Overall, compared to the other options available at special teams, McGuire at this point in time would bring more to the position than the rest due to his unique attributes. If he competes for the starting position, there is little to no doubt that his blazing speed and ability to make big plays at any given moment will finally give the Jets a talented returner that can take it to the house.