Fans are expecting rookie Tre Tucker to have a big, important role with the Las Vegas Raiders this season and I agree with them.
One of the bigger battles in training camp, and soon the preseason, for the Raiders is figuring out who will be the primary kick returner.
The Raiders have struggled to field a dynamic return game for years. This year, they have several players vying to handle for the kick and punt return duties with Tucker (a third-round pick as a receiver out of Cincinnati), new free-agent receiver DeAndre Carter and incumbents, slot receiver Hunter Renfrow and running back Ameer Abdullah all in the mix. Receivers Keelan Cole and D.J. Turner also has some experience.
We recently asked readers who they think would handle the kick and punt return duties. These were the results: 75 percent of the voters think Tucker is the specialist, while 16 percent think it will be Carr. Six percent of the voters think Abdullah and Renfrow will be the primary kick and pun returners again and three percent some someone else will be the specialist.
I think in a perfect world this season, Tucker gets the chance to return both punts and kicks. Tucker returned 67 kickoffs for a 24.9 per return average with two touchdowns in four seasons. He returned 43 punts in his Bearcats’ career for an 8.6 yards average with no scores.
Tucker likely will have a limited role in the Las Vegas offense as a rookie as he’s buried on the depth chart, so the best way for him to contribute will be as the primary return man. So, I’m with the majority on this one.