Tyreek Hill could be in line for a return to the kickoff team.
The Chiefs lost two of their return men Sunday in Denver, with injuries to De’Anthony Thomas and Akeem Hunt ending each of their seasons. On Wednesday, as special teams coordinator Dave Toub met with the media, he was greeted with a question about the remaining options.
“Put Tyreek back there,” Toub responded.
Asked if he was serious, Toub said, “I don’t know. We’ll see. It’s always an option.”
And a good one last year. On 14 kickoff returns as a rookie, Hill averaged 27.4 yards and took one back for a touchdown.
But his promotion to the Chiefs’ top wide receiver spot in 2017 included a subtraction from the kickoff return unit, an effort to conserve his energy and protect him from potential injury. On what the Chiefs have missed by not using Hill on kickoffs, Toub said, “Maybe two touchdowns.”
Hill has pressed for the job in Saturday’s AFC Wild Card playoff game against the Titans. And while Toub listed Demarcus Robinson and Charcandrick West as other options, he stressed that experience on kickoff returns plays a more significant factor in the postseason.
West has two career kickoff returns, both this season. He turned those into a combined 37 yards. Robinson, in his second NFL season, has never returned a kickoff.