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Rizzi Clarifies Return Situation
By on August 21, 2013 at 4:44 pm

NFL: Miami Dolphins-Training CampLast year, Dolphins return man Marcus Thigpen burst onto the scene as a first-year NFL player. Thigpen averaged 27.4 yards per kick return and 12.2 yards per punt return, good enough to be considered as one of the league’s better return men.

The Dolphins have plenty of options to choose from for their kick return game this season, as De’Andre Pressley, Mike Gillislee and Nolan Carroll have all had the opportunity to field kickoffs this preseason.

But when asked who would be returning kickoffs for Miami in 2013, special teams coordinator Darren Rizzi didn’t hesitate.

“Well, I think you look at Marcus Thigpen and just look at what he did last year,” Rizzi said. “He was a guy that finished in the top-5 in kick return and punt return in his first year of doing it in the NFL.”

Rizzi isn’t only satisfied with Thigpen’s work to-date, but he also feels the young speedster has plenty of room for growth.

“And I’ve said this a lot of times,” Rizzie commented, “I think that Marcus actually left some plays out there on the field, so I feel comfortable that he’s going to get better and I think with the guys he has, in the potential blocking form, I think he’s got the potential to make big plays.”

However, while Rizzi admitted Thigpen will likely be the guy for the Dolphins on kick returns, he added that punts will be a different story, at least for now.

“Punt return wise, I think that kind of like we did last year a little bit of a committee,” he said. “But I think right now, if we played a game today, he would have a majority of them.”

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