Placekickers may no longer be NFL kickoff specialist

One of the NFL's best coaches, Kansas City Chiefs special teams coordinator Dave Toub, has been interviewed for head coaching positions.  

He believes the NFL's new kickoff rules may lead to no kickers on the field. Toub recently said the NFL's new "XFL-style" kickoff method allows kickoff specialists to make more tackles.   

Toub estimated that kickers were “involved” in 25–40% of XFL kickoff returns.  

In “certain situations,” like a late lead, the Chiefs would use their backup kicker, Harrison Butker,  

to kick the ball out of the end zone and take a five-yard penalty to give the opposing offense the ball at the 30-yard line instead of allowing a kickoff return attempt.  

Only 10 non-specialists kicked NFL kickoffs last season.   

Six came from Houston Texans injured replacement kickoff specialist Dare Ogunbowale in the second half of their Week 9 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  

The Chiefs may make starting safety Justin Reid their kickoff specialist after he had seven kickoffs and two extra point attempts in 2022. To say that this year's NFL rule amendments will freshen the kickoff is an understatement.  

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