There were ups and downs on special teams yesterday, especially in the return game.
Let's review the key contributions...
Kicking game - Blame it on the Henny
The kicking game was always going to be a struggle due to the windy conditions, but they also had an impact upon THOMAS HENNESSY'S long snaps. One in particular was down by LACHLAN EDWARDS' shoe-tops and the punter dropped it, then rushed his kick which was shanked 28 yards to set up the go-ahead field goal. The delay also meant that BRANDON COPELAND was penalized for being too far downfield.
Edwards used the wind to his advantage a few times, booming some big kicks, including 57 and 60-yarders, although he arguably outkicked his coverage a few times as he allowed 57 return yards, including a 20-yarder.
Kicker JASON MYERS also used the wind to his advantage on an impressive 55-yard field goal, adding two extra points and two touchbacks on his four kickoffs. TARELL BASHAM was offside on the opening kickoff, though.
Return game - Roberts the zero
ANDRE ROBERTS had a rough time in the wind too, as he muffed a punt, fumbled a kickoff out of bounds and misplayed two other punts, each of which bounced about 20 yards down the field.
Having previously excelled on punts but struggled on kickoffs, Roberts was much more effective on kickoffs this week, averaging over 32 yards per return. He got out past the 25 on five of his six returns; only being stopped at the 24 on the last one. His longest returns went for 54 and 41 yards.
CHRIS HERNDON continues to have his struggles as a blocker, as he was called for a 15-yard penalty for an illegal double-team block. However, he made his block well on one of Roberts' returns.
RASHARD ROBINSON was badly beaten downfield by the gunner on one punt.
Kick coverage - Shot out of a Cannon
On a day when TRENTON CANNON had something of a breakout performance offensively, he also showcased his athletic ability on the kick coverage units. Cannon had two tackles and was consistently the first guy to get downfield.
His first tackle saw him chase down a bouncing punt to wrap up the return man inside the 20 as soon as he fielded it. He also had a tackle on a kickoff return where he and NEVILLE HEWITT were initially blocked out of the play, but Cannon was able to recover and chase back to make the tackle from behind at the 33.
Cannon also missed a tackle and got penalized for running out of bounds, though.
Hewitt also had a couple of special teams tackles, one of which was as he was cleaning up after Cannon's miss. DOUG MIDDLETON and CHARONE PEAKE were also in on a couple of tackles and PARRY NICKERSON made the tackle on the opening kickoff, which was returned to the 27. Middleton made a nice play to stretch one return to the outside, but Peake and Copeland each overpursued on Marcus Sherels' longest punt return.