• Dez Bryant, Felix Jones to Handle Cowboys' Return Duties



    Concerns about using a rookie first round wide receiver and their starting running back in the return game gave the Cowboys all the reasons they needed to take a pass on either in 2011.

    But, according to Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones, that thinking has been reevaluated.

    From Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com: “We think that’s really going to do wonders for our kicking game,” executive vice president Stephen Jones said. “We’re going to let them work on it from the get go. Obviously, we didn’t do it with Felix last year because he was the starting running back and we didn’t do it with Dez. This year, we think it’ll make a big difference. Both guys were top guys come out of college. By letting them work on it every day, Joe (DeCamillis) thinks it’ll make a big difference.”

    Bryant had punt returns for touchdowns of 62 and 93 yards as a rookie and averaged 14.3 yards in 15 returns. Last season, he suffered a bruised quadriceps in the season opener and was limited as a returner for the rest of the year.

    Jones has averaged 24.5 yards per kick return in his first three seasons. He had a 98-yard touchdown as a rookie.

    “We were wanting to try some of the young guys last year,” Stephen Jones said. “I think Dez doing punt returns, we’ve done it with Deion (Sanders). We think that’s a safer deal. And then with Felix obviously going to No. 2 running back, then I think him get some chances to make some plays as well.”
    The Cowboys were less than productive on both kick and punt returns in 2011 averaging just 7.1 yards per punt return and 23.3 yards per kick return in 2011 leaving their offense often in less than optimal field position.

    Comments 2 Comments
    1. Dave Lapham's Avatar
      With the rule change, there are fewer chances to be a huge factor in the KOR game. Punt returns is where a player can still have a major impact in winning the field position battle for his team. Dez Bryant has a natural talent and ability to return punts that make it difficult to pass up.
    1. BuckeyeRidley's Avatar
      Dez Bryant got a warning from Jerry Jones on how he should handle himself; haopefully he can stay in line. Dez & Felix on the return would be like DeSean Jackson. That is pretty cool stuff & they have the chance to be successful with the switch up. I like it.