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Trestman sees Hester as a returner, not a receiver

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Bears coach Marc Trestman wants Devin Hester focused on what he does best.

Trestman said at the league meeting today that he views Hester as a return man, not a wide receiver. As a result, Trestman said, Hester will be spending his time in practice working with the special teams.

Although Trestman hasn’t totally ruled out Hester playing some receiver, he said he’s not even sure if Hester will practice with the wide receivers this season, let alone play with them.

When the Bears drafted Hester in 2006, they initially listed him as a cornerback, and it wasn’t until he burst onto the scene as the best return man in the NFL during his rookie season that the team decided to try to put the ball in his hands more by playing him on offense.

The results on offense have been mixed: Hester has had his moments as a receiver, but he’s never been a game-changer on offense the way he has been on special teams. And there’s been some talk that the time Hester is spending on offense is detracting from what he does as a returner.

That won’t be the case this year: Trestman is making returning kicks Hester’s top priority.

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29 Responses to “Trestman sees Hester as a returner, not a receiver”
  1. whatchutalkinabouthillis says: Mar 20, 2013 11:43 AM

    So far he’s showing more sense than the previous regime.

  2. GenXJay says: Mar 20, 2013 11:45 AM

    Prepare yourself Bears fans, here comes the inevitable filthmcnasty comment(s)

  3. walker615 says: Mar 20, 2013 11:46 AM

    FINALLY someone understands Hester. Hopefully he still has something left in the tank.

  4. lorddarkhelmet says: Mar 20, 2013 11:52 AM

    I clearly have given Trestman too little credit. I have been saying this for years

  5. h3min1230 says: Mar 20, 2013 11:52 AM

    Bet he takes 3 back to the house this year.

    2 punts and 1 kickoff..

  6. sdwat54 says: Mar 20, 2013 11:53 AM

    Sorry it took an entire regime change to get this one figured out.

    The problem will be convincing Hester, who, under the poisonous tuteledge of one Deion Sanders, made the absurd decision that he was, indeed, a premier WR and kicked it up Lovie & Company’s rear during his camp holdout. It was all about the money he could make as a WR.

    We’ll see if it’s not already too late to bring Hester back as a returner, but I’m not optimistic. I think this horse was outta the barn 2 seasons ago.

  7. nomoreseasontix says: Mar 20, 2013 12:08 PM

    That’s kind of a rule for success. Find what you’re good at and do that.

  8. joebone says: Mar 20, 2013 12:12 PM

    Hester’s a one trick pony who can no longer do the one trick. And he has become a pouter ever since Lovie got whacked. Taking him out of the WR role is a good move, but getting rid of him altogether would be even better. Time for new blood and younger legs.

  9. whitdog23 says: Mar 20, 2013 12:12 PM

    is 3 TDs enough??

  10. daburgher says: Mar 20, 2013 12:12 PM

    Why did they move him from cb to begin with?

  11. DonRSD says: Mar 20, 2013 12:17 PM

    Not a Bears fan (Giants fan here), but Lovie should’ve used Hester @ KR & PR on every kick.

  12. kingdm8 says: Mar 20, 2013 12:19 PM

    In other news, the sky is blue and grass is green.

  13. dezno24 says: Mar 20, 2013 12:20 PM

    Like this guy more and more and we havent even played a game yet. This is a top 5 reason why Lovie was fired by trying to force him to be a WR when he isnt. This is Hester last year with us, so hopefully he has a break out year and then takes his talents to South Beach.

  14. metalhead65 says: Mar 20, 2013 12:37 PM

    well at least he knows what he will be doing full time now. it is a shame the previous regime was not smart enough to realize if they were going to use him as a receiver instead of wasting time on throwing screen passes to him they should have just said go deep and had Cutler throw it to him. I mean Rex Grossman made benard berrian of all people a rich man doing only that and hester is faster than him.

  15. whitecastleisafoodgroup says: Mar 20, 2013 12:52 PM

    Does Devin know about this yet? 🙂

  16. filthymcnasty1 says: Mar 20, 2013 12:52 PM

    Packer fans have trying to tell you meatheads this for years, but you wouldn’t listen. Now Trestman says it and Bear fans act like the guy just invented penicillin.

  17. monsterofyourgirlsmidway says: Mar 20, 2013 12:56 PM

    THANK YOU. So far so good this offseason!

  18. bears4life says: Mar 20, 2013 12:56 PM

    Great move, this should’ve been the case all along. Now, it’s just too bad that we gave Eric Weems so much guaranteed money. He is a waste of a WR spot and cap room. The penalty for him isn’t worth the cut either. Anyone want to give a 6th or 7th for a formadable return guy?

  19. bears4life says: Mar 20, 2013 12:58 PM

    *formidable. sorry.

  20. norseyapper says: Mar 20, 2013 1:01 PM

    Never could understand why the Bears would take Hester, one of the finest return guys in the history of the league and limit his work as a returner to give him more time as a receiver. Excellent returner, poor receiver….so let’s take away the returns and emphasize the receiver?

    The moves the Bears are making this off season look like they actually intend to take charge and win.

  21. billsfan1 says: Mar 20, 2013 1:04 PM

    I agree with Trestman but aren’t you guys giving him too much credit for the obvious? The move isn’t necessitated by his return skills ( best returner of all time IMO ) but rather his lack of ability to play wr.. Face it, he would serve no purpose on the field if they took away kicks and punts

  22. sowcrates says: Mar 20, 2013 1:08 PM

    In 2008, when Hester had 665 yards receiving and 3 TDs, Danieal Manning was a pro bowl KICK returner that averaged 29.7 yards/return…6 higher than Hester’s career KR average

    In 2009, Hester had 753 yards and three TDs while Johnny Knox was a pro bowl KICK returner who averaged 29.0 yards/return

    Chicago’s special teams unit AS A WHOLE was so good that Hester was only needed to handle punts while they used a recent draft pick from the Track & Field factory that is Abilene Christian University to run the kicks behind their solid blockers.

    Hester’s best season returning (not for TDs but for efficiency per return) was in 2010 when he averaged 17.1 per punt and 35 per kick (even though he only took 12). Meanwhile, he added 475 yards receiving.

    If you ask this Bears fan, Hester’s role as a wide receiver has NEVER hurt his return game. Losing blockers like Corey Graham and others over the years has had more to do with the change in productivity than Hester’s snap count. He’s just NOT A VERY GOOD RECEIVER.

  23. chi01town says: Mar 20, 2013 1:21 PM

    Treatmen is right. So far the Chicago
    Bears have added to them self by addition NOW they are adding to them self by subtraction. Hester is not a WR. NOW LETS GET BACK TO WORK ON THE O-LINE. GO EMERY GO

  24. unbearablemonster says: Mar 20, 2013 1:33 PM

    about time!

  25. Deb says: Mar 20, 2013 1:38 PM

    That’s all well and good as long as the league has kicks to return. Let’s hope the next bonehead move isn’t to eliminate those.

  26. nard100 says: Mar 20, 2013 1:59 PM

    He was drafted as a corner?! That explains so much about his WR skills.

  27. cowboyscanada says: Mar 20, 2013 6:34 PM

    Cowboys fan here,,,,,Trestman will make the Bears a serious contender. The guy has class and has a great football mind.

  28. louiespoon says: Mar 20, 2013 6:37 PM

    I still think he could do what Knox did, be a speedy burner. Too bad he lost focus when the ball didn’t go his way….

  29. larryboodry says: Mar 20, 2013 7:51 PM

    Hopefully concentrating only on KR & PR will lead Hester to re-emerge as a top returner.

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