With Marcus Sherels now returning punts for the New Orleans Saints, the Minnesota Vikings will need a new player to perform that duty for the 2019 season.
The Minnesota Vikings have a huge task in front of them for the 2019 NFL season since they will need to replace the franchise leader in punt return yardage and touchdowns now that Marcus Sherels is in New Orleans.
Good news for the team is that there are some options to fill Sherels’ shoes. Minnesota will need to try multiple players at the spot and find one that can hopefully perform somewhere near the level of their former punt returner.
However, it appears as though a favorite for the job has already emerged for the position. According to Mark Craig of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Jordan Taylor has been trying out for the punt return job, but another individual is the favorite to land the job.
“I think I might be the tallest punt returner in NFL history,” Taylor said after spending Tuesday’s OTA as the No. 2 punt returner behind Chad Beebe, the early front-runner to replacing Marcus Sherels, who owned the job for eight seasons.
This tidbit was found by our friends over at The Daily Norseman, who feel Beebe did a solid enough job returning in college that they would be comfortable with him competing for the starting job.
Recently, I had predicted that Brandon Zylstra would be the punt returner for Minnesota in 2019, but there is a really solid chance Beebe could take that job this year and contribute as a wide receiver. Both young, talented Vikings have looked decent at the spot in the past, so hopefully one can emerge as the better of the two.
While there does seem to be a favorite at punt returner this year, this is still a battle to watch throughout OTAs and training camp. With several players looking to land that job to secure a spot on the 53-man roster, this should be a highly coveted position for players on the fringe who are hoping to get more opportunities to prove themselves on offense or defense.