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Returner Recap and Latest News: Week 3

Week 3 news for fantasy leagues that utilize returners.

Individual returner projections for each week are included in your MyFBG projections and rankings automatically. My returner projections are included in the default projection set with David Dodds' offensive predictions. Choose David as the source, and then choose a scoring system in which you have included points for return yards.

The base return projections for a week can be seen on this page. You can also go to the content for the week and use the Returner Projections link to get there.

UPDATES

Panthers kick returners Fozzy Whittaker has been limited in practice with a shoulder injury and is Questionable.

Devin Hester has been ruled Out for Atlanta's game against Dallas.

Broncos kick returner Omar Bolden continued to be limited in practice by a foot injury and is Questionable. Andre Caldwell will likely handle kickoffs again if Bolden misses the game.

Denard Robinson's sprained knee has kept him out of practices in Jacksonville, and he is listed as Doubtful for this week.

Jacoby Jones has not practiced this week for the Chargers and has been ruled Out for Week 3.

As expected, Chris Owusu has been ruled Out this week for the Jets.

Bruce Ellington was limited in practice and is a gametime decision for the 49ers. If he plays he may see the majority of the returns over Jarryd Hayne and DeAndrew White. Reggie Bush has been downgraded to Doubtful and has been limited in practice to working on the sideline.

Week 2 Recap

Top Performers

Travis Benjamin topped the list of returners in Week 2 as he returned 6 punts for 154 yards including a 78-yard touchdown as he helped the Browns beat the Titans. Dwayne Harris turned around the recent trend the Giants have had of acquiring good returners only to see them falter, by gaining 143 total yards on 2 kickoff and 4 punt returns, good enough for second place this week in total return yards. David Johnson ranked third, gaining all of his yards on his 108-yard kickoff return for a touchdown for Arizona, and joining Benjamin as the only returners to find the end zone this week.

Tyler Lockett was fifth for the week in total yards, but it was enough to hold onto the lead in total return yards for the year with 220 yards on 6 kick returns and 4 punt returns. Ameer Abdullah leads the league in kickoff return yards over the first two weeks with 189, which was also enough to move him up into second place in total yards.

The last two seasons saw 20 and 19 total return touchdowns. The 2015 season is off to a great start to top those numbers as there have been five touchdowns scored on returns through the first two weeks.

All Week 2 Returners

Below are all returners for Week 2.

RKPLAYERTEAMKick RetKR YdsKR TDPunt RetPR YdsPR TDTotal YdsTotal TDs
1 Travis Benjamin CLE 0 0 0 6 154 1 154 1
2 Dwayne Harris NYG 2 77 0 4 66 0 143 0
3 David Johnson ARI 1 108 1 0 0 0 108 1
4 Marc Mariani CHI 3 86 0 1 20 0 106 0
5 Tyler Lockett SEA 4 79 0 2 22 0 101 0
6 Tyler Varga IND 4 98 0 0 0 0 98 0
7 Ameer Abdullah DET 3 84 0 0 0 0 84 0
8 Bobby Rainey TAM 1 37 0 3 34 0 71 0
9 Branden Oliver SDG 3 71 0 0 0 0 71 0
10 Cordarrelle Patterson MIN 2 62 0 0 0 0 62 0
11 Brandon Tate CIN 1 29 0 2 29 0 58 0
12 Keith Mumphery HOU 0 0 0 6 58 0 58 0
13 DeAndrew White SFO 2 47 0 1 4 0 51 0
14 Corey Grant JAX 2 46 0 0 0 0 46 0
15 Adam Jones CIN 2 45 0 1 0 0 45 0
16 Percy Harvin BUF 2 45 0 0 0 0 45 0
17 Ted Ginn CAR 0 0 0 4 44 0 44 0
18 Dexter McCluster TEN 0 0 0 4 41 0 41 0
19 Danny Amendola NWE 0 0 0 3 39 0 39 0
20 Marcus Sherels MIN 0 0 0 3 39 0 39 0
21 Fozzy Whittaker CAR 1 33 0 0 0 0 33 0
22 Shaun Draughn CLE 1 31 0 0 0 0 31 0
23 Lance Dunbar DAL 1 31 0 0 0 0 31 0
24 Eric Weems ATL 1 21 0 1 10 0 31 0
25 Rashad Greene JAX 0 0 0 2 30 0 30 0
26 Michael Campanaro BAL 1 29 0 0 0 0 29 0
27 Benny Cunningham STL 1 28 0 0 0 0 28 0
28 Jarvis Landry MIA 0 0 0 3 25 0 25 0
29 Marcus Murphy NOR 1 23 0 1 0 0 23 0
30 Rashad Ross WAS 1 23 0 0 0 0 23 0
31 Josh Huff PHI 1 21 0 0 0 0 21 0
32 Knile Davis KAN 1 21 0 0 0 0 21 0
33 Andre Caldwell DEN 1 21 0 0 0 0 21 0
34 Darren Sproles PHI 0 0 0 2 20 0 20 0
35 Ty Montgomery GNB 1 19 0 0 0 0 19 0
36 Antonio Brown PIT 0 0 0 1 16 0 16 0
37 DeAnthony Thomas KAN 0 0 0 4 15 0 15 0
38 Marcus Thigpen BUF 0 0 0 1 14 0 14 0
39 Jamison Crowder WAS 0 0 0 5 12 0 12 0
40 Tony Jerod-Eddie SFO 1 11 0 0 0 0 11 0
41 Terron Ward ATL 1 10 0 0 0 0 10 0
42 Kerwynn Williams ARI 1 9 0 0 0 0 9 0
43 Jarryd Hayne SFO 0 0 0 1 7 0 7 0
44 Patrick Peterson ARI 0 0 0 1 6 0 6 0
45 Travis Carrie OAK 0 0 0 2 5 0 5 0
46 Golden Tate DET 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 0
47 Julian Edelman NWE 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 0
48 Nick Marshall JAX 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 0
49 Cole Beasley DAL 0 0 0 2 1 0 1 0
50 JJ Nelson ARI 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0
51 Keenan Allen SDG 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0

Returners Year to Date

Here are the top 40 returners for the year by total return yards.

RKPLAYERTEAMKick RetKR YdsKR TDPunt RetPR YdsPR TDTotal YdsTotal TDs
1 Tyler Lockett SEA 6 135 0 4 85 1 220 1
2 Ameer Abdullah DET 6 189 0       189 0
3 Bobby Rainey TAM 4 120 0 5 51 0 171 0
4 Marc Mariani CHI 5 134 0 2 31 0 165 0
5 Travis Benjamin CLE       7 164 1 164 1
6 Tyler Varga IND 6 151 0       151 0
7 David Johnson ARI 2 151 1       151 1
8 Dwayne Harris NYG 2 77 0 6 69 0 146 0
9 Ty Montgomery GNB 4 125 0       125 0
10 Eric Weems ATL 4 80 0 3 28 0 108 0
11 Lance Dunbar DAL 4 101 0       101 0
12 Jarvis Landry MIA       5 99 1 99 1
13 DeAnthony Thomas KAN       9 96 0 96 0
14 Ted Ginn CAR       7 90 0 90 0
15 Corey Grant JAX 3 86 0       86 0
16 Cordarrelle Patterson MIN 3 83 0       83 0
17 Tavon Austin STL       2 81 1 81 1
18 Keith Mumphery HOU       10 72 0 72 0
19 Brandon Tate CIN 3 43 0 2 29 0 72 0
20 Branden Oliver SDG 3 71 0       71 0
21 Adam Jones CIN 2 45 0 3 23 0 68 0
22 Isaiah Pead STL 3 63 0       63 0
23 Taiwan Jones OAK 2 61 0       61 0
24 Shaun Draughn CLE 2 58 0       58 0
25 Dexter McCluster TEN       6 55 0 55 0
26 LaMichael James MIA 2 54 0       54 0
27 DeAndrew White SFO 2 47 0 1 4 0 51 0
28 Knile Davis KAN 2 51 0       51 0
29 Marcus Sherels MIN       5 48 0 48 0
30 Darren Sproles PHI       5 45 0 45 0
31 Percy Harvin BUF 2 45 0       45 0
32 Danny Amendola NWE       4 40 0 40 0
33 Rashad Greene JAX       3 39 0 39 0
34 Golden Tate DET       3 36 0 36 0
35 Chris Thompson WAS 1 36 0       36 0
36 Jamison Crowder WAS       7 35 0 35 0
37 Fozzy Whittaker CAR 1 33 0       33 0
38 Travis Carrie OAK       5 32 0 32 0
39 Steve Smith BAL       2 32 0 32 0
40 Michael Campanaro BAL 1 29 0       29 0

Week 3 Outlook

Job Changes

Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians said that he wanted cornerback Patrick Peterson to handle a punt that J.J. Nelson was injured on, but made the decision too late. Nelson muffed the punt and suffered an injury that may keep him out for a few weeks, likely putting the job back in Peterson's hands. Peterson handled the rest of the punts in the game.

The Patriots used Dion Lewis on kick returns. If he continues to handle them, the combination of kickoff returns and the opportunities Lewis is seeing on offense could cause his value to jump in leagues with generous scoring for return yards.

Judging from Week 2, Chris Thompson may have already lost Washington's kickoff return job to receiver Rashad Ross.

In the wake of cutting LaMichael James, the Dolphins signed speedy running back Raheem Mostert and used him on kickoff returns in Week 2. Jarvis Landry continued to handle punt returns.

With Tre Mason returning as a starting running back for the Rams, Benjamin Cunningham went back to handling kickoff returns.

Marcus Thigpen handling kickoff returns in the Bills first game of the year led me to speculate the team might save often-injured Percy Harvin and use him situationally when they really could use a big return. This might have been the case against the Patriots, when Harvin handled returns with the Bills trailing.

INJURIES OF NOTE

J.J. Nelson of the Cardinals suffered a shoulder injury and should be out two-to-four weeks. As previously mentioned, Arizona was already considering using Patrick Peterson on the play where Nelson was injured, and Peterson handled the rest of the punt returns in the game.

Denard Robinson sprained his MCL though it is still unclear how much time he might miss. Corey Grant has been handling kickoff returns for the Jaguars, so nothing should change for the time being in the return game.

Things are changing quickly in Jacksonville on punts though. The Jaguars turned to Nick Marshall for punt returns when Rashad Greene suffered a thumb injury in the second half.  Bryan Walters, the player they might normally have turned to, had been waived to make room for an extra cornerback. Greene has since been placed on Injured Reserve with a designation to return, and Walters has been re-signed. Walters might have the edge on handling punts with Greene out, though Marshall could still see opportunities.

With Reggie Bush and Bruce Ellington both missing time to injuries in Week 2, the 49ers used DeAndrew White on kickoff returns, and both Jarryd Hayne and White had a punt return. Hayne was also serving as the backup running back in the game. Bush was only expected to miss one game, and Ellington's status is not clear yet, which casts doubt on who will be used at returner for Week 3.

As expected, Jacoby Jones missed the Chargers game this week with an ankle injury. Keenan Allen and Branden Oliver handled punts and kickoffs respectively. The status of Jones for Week 3 will need to be watched.

Devin Hester missed his second game of the season while dealing with turf toe. Eric Weems again handled the returns for Atlanta. Hester is considered week-to-week, so his status should be watched as we get closer to game time.

Omar Bolden's foot injury kept him out of Denver's second game. His usual backup, Andre Caldwell, handled kickoff returns while Bolden was out.

Chris Owusu reportedly may miss two weeks with a leg injury. The Jets have Bilal Powell and Zac Stacy listed as backups on the depth chart. Due to Powell's role on offense, it would not be a surprise if Stacy gets the first crack at kickoff returns.