Marcus Sherels wants to return punts and kickoffs for Minnesota Vikings

(Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) Marcus Sherels
(Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) Marcus Sherels /

Minnesota Vikings special teams veteran Marcus Sherels is looking for an increased role in the return game this season.

Marcus Sherels is a staple on the Minnesota Vikings special teams. He’s a game changer who made a NFL career out of that aspect of the game. Last season Sherels was second in the NFL in punt returns averaging 13.9 yards a carry. He wants to help the team even more during the 2017 season and is willing to return kickoffs in addition to punts.

The Minnesota Vikings are in need of someone to step up as the starting kick returner. The position opened up this offseason when free agent Cordarrelle Patterson signed with the Oakland Raiders. It wont be an easy spot to replace since Patterson was first in the NFL last season averaging 31.68 yards a return including one 104 yard touchdown.

That leaves veteran Marcus Sherels as a viable option if durable enough to make it through the season taking on both responsibilities.  He is ready to step up and get the job done. When asked about taking about playing both roles he answered the following as reported by Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press.

"“If it makes the team better and they need me, then of course,’’ Sherels said of wanting to also return kickoffs. “There’s a lot of us competing right now. I just try to do my best and try to help the team in any way possible.’’"

That quote sums up Sherels NFL career in a nutshell. He is an undervalued impact player who does what it takes to win.

Can Sherels return kickoffs effectively?

As a kick returner Sherels averaged 26.1 yards during his career with the Minnesota Vikings. That would have been good enough to place him fifth last season right behind Tyler Lockett of the Seattle Seahawks.

Below is a video of Sherels returning a punt for a touchdown as a reminder of how explosive and fast he is.

Sherels is fast and has the ability to take it the distance every time. He appears confident in handling both return responsibilities next season. Therefore he is an excellent replacement for Patterson.

Next: Replacing Chad Greenway

The most important thing is Sherels will help the Minnesota Vikings final 53 man roster by returning kicks. The Vikings will avoid having to keep a young player active just for kick return duties.