The Best Punt Return Specialists in NFL History

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The Best Punt Return Specialists in NFL History
(Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

There are many excellent return specialists today in Hester, McGee, Cribbs, Carr, Rossum, Davis, Hall, and many more.

Some specialize in returning mainly punts or kickoffs.

Some do both.

Devin Hester deserves mention.

He has scored seven touchdowns on punt returns in the first two seasons of his career.

But, it is the NFL: Not For Long.

One can never assume he will score again, nor not suffer a career ending injury at any given moment.

Even if he never does anything again on the gridiron, his two seasons have put his name on many peoples list.

I wanted to give him mention, as well as Mike Nelms, Eddie Brown, Jermaine Lewis, Darrien Gordon, Leroy Irvin, Louis Lipps, "Bullet" Bill Dudley, Emlen Tunnell, George Atkinson, Greg Pruitt, Leon Johnson, Neal Colzie, Vai Sikahema, Dick Christy, Fulton Walker, Lemar Parrish, J.T. Smith, Rodger Bird, Claude Gibson, and Oakland's Tim Brown.

These are some of the best ever to have returned punts in NFL history.

I recently did an All Time Kickoff Returners list, where I told you about the best kickoff AND punt returner in NFL history:

Brian Mitchell

His 23,330 total yards ranks second All Time.

He also averaged 10.8 yards per punt return on 463 attempts.

His 19,013 total return yards is a record, as is his 4,999 punt return yards.

His nine punt return touchdowns is the second most ever in NFL history.

Brian's 231 fair catches are the most ever, and his 33 in one season is also an NFL record.

He is one of just four players in NFL history to gain over 2,000 yards four times in his career.

This article just deals with punt returners, so let us get to it in no particular order.

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