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Bryan Walters shows off that incredible balance needed to be an NFL kick return man.
To me, the kick and punt returner should be an extremely high priority for every team in the NFL, every season. The Chargers went years without having a Top Five offense, yet repeatedly finished in the top three in scoring because they always won the field position battle.
We all saw what happened last season. The Chargers finished No. 1 in both offensive and defensive yards and worst of all time in special teams, missing the playoffs in the process.
I was no fan of Darren Sproles last year because he had all the talent to be an elite kick returner, but put on weight in order to be a better running back. He may be a rare talent as a third-down back, but he's quite mediocre as a conventional running back and should not have given up his inhuman quickness by adding the extra 10 pounds to get to 185 pounds.
Did Sproles have an explosive return in all of 2010?
Enter first-year wide receiver Bryan Walters.
Walters shot through the middle on his first return of the season, used his blockers brilliantly and exploded into the endzone, which electrified the entire stadium.
Walters is nowhere near Sproles talent-wise (who is?), but if Walters can stick to being an effective kick returner and not worry about being an elite receiver, he can make more of an impact than the overweight Sproles did last season.
Coach Turner has said that people have been in his ear about Walter's knack for returning kicks and he was extremely pleased to see that show up in a game.
I won't rule out any of the other young players vying for a chance to make it as a returner, but Walters has won me over.