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Kickoff Returns, Return Yards, and Touchbacks for Kickers: 2016 NFL Season

The kickoff return was often considered one of the most exciting plays in football.  The chart below shows which kickers have allowed the most return yards and which ones have managed to get the most touchbacks.  

The kicker is partially responsible for return yards (usually depending on his leg strength), the other special teams players play an equally important role.  The coverage men need to be quick and agile in their pursuit of the kick returner.  The coverage team is sometimes referred to as the "suicide squad".

More about Kickoff Returns, Return Yards, and Touchbacks for Kickers

The ideal kickoff is a touchback because it doesn't allow the receiving team to return the ball, instead just taking it on the 20 yard line.  Depending on leg strength and field conditions, sometimes a kick return is unavoidable. 

In 2011 the NFL moved kickoffs from a team's own 30 yard line to the 35 yard line in order to cut down on collision injuries, it has resulted in significantly more touchbacks.

Kickoff Return Yard Leaders
PlayerTeamKickoff ReturnsKickoff Return YardsKickoff Touchbacks
Nick NovakHOU461,10223
Mason CrosbyGB411,08046
Matt BosherATL4090565
Wil LutzNO4089849
Sebastian JanikowskiOAK4589643
Cairo SantosKC3584348
Pat McAfeeIND3982549
Dan CarpenterBUF3881528
Mike NugentCIN3478028
Stephen GostkowskiNE4077152
Connor BarthCHI3576826
Dan BaileyDAL3374657
Caleb SturgisPHI3871246
Phil DawsonSF356874
Chandler CatanzaroARI2967152
Nick FolkNYJ2966539
Steven HauschkaSEA3164254
Chris BoswellPIT2663949
Andrew FranksMIA3163243
Roberto AguayoTB2456852
Blair WalshMIN2154919
Justin TuckerBAL2654052
Robbie GouldNYG2254019
Dustin HopkinsWAS2553465
Josh LamboSD2047367
Sam MartinDET2246252
Ryan SuccopTEN2045258
Brandon McManusDEN2444050
Kai ForbathMIN1743119
Greg ZuerleinLA2243036
Graham GanoCAR2239963
Cody ParkeyCLE1937934
Jason MyersJAX1226160
Randy BullockCIN919414
Bradley PinionSF918220
Josh BrownNYG814615
Jordan GayBUF71337
Patrick MurrayCLE31034
Riley DixonDEN2861
Colton SchmidtBUF1510
Brian PetersHOU2330
Matt PraterDET1321
Drew KaserSD1310
Britton ColquittCLE2280
Brad WingNYG1230
Sam KochBAL1190
Andy LeeCAR1180
Kevin HuberCIN1160
Bryan AngerTB1150
Brad NortmanJAX1120
Jon RyanSEA1120
Brett KernTEN1100
Patrick O'DonnellCHI190
Kickoff Returns, Return Yards, and Touchbacks for Kickers By Season:
2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 |

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