Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles has an expanded role on offense now that Larry Johnson is gone. But he’s still returning kickoffs, and his efforts as a kick returner led him to receive the AFC special teams player of the week award.
Charles returned the opening kickoff for a 97-yard touchdown against the Steelers on Sunday, getting the Chiefs on the board first on the way to an overtime upset of Pittsburgh.
It’s the second consecutive week that a kickoff returner playing against the Steelers has won the player of the week award; Bernard Scott of the Bengals got the honor last week. That’s probably a pretty good sign that the Steelers need to work on their kick coverage.
Charles finished Sunday’s game with 158 kickoff return yards, and his touchdown was the first kickoff return score by the Chiefs since Dante Hall scored one in October of 2005.