The Redskins announced the hiring of Nate Kaczor as their new special teams coach on Saturday morning. Kaczor will take over the role vacated by Ben Kotwica, who left Washington to take the same role in Atlanta.
Kaczor spent the last three seasons with the Buccaneers as special teams coordinator, but that coaching staff got let go this offseason. Prior to his work in Tampa, Kaczor coached in similar roles for the Titans and the Jaguars.
It's not particularly easy to rank special teams, but Kotwica's groups did some things very well, particularly in punt coverage. Football Outsiders ranked all 32 special teams groups across the league based on a formula that combines field goals/extra points, kickoffs, kick returns, punts, and punt returns; The Redskins ranked 8th and Tampa ranked 29th.
On the flip side, the Redskins had some of the lowest kick and punt return yardage in the NFL last season. The Redskins gained just 110 yards on all of their punt returns for the year.
Head coach Jay Gruden spoke about bringing in Kaczor.
"We are excited to have Nate join our staff. We have had the opportunity to face his special teams play during his time at Tampa Bay and respected competing against him," Gruden said via press release. "He is a competitor and we have noticed and admired the intensity his units have played with through the course of his time as a special teams coordinator and assistant coach in the NFL."
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Joe Theismann wants Kyler Murray to have a "long, happy career" — as a professional baseball player.
In an interview with NBC Sports Washington, the former Redskins QB was asked what he thought of Murray's choice to pursue his NFL dreams over his MLB dreams for now. He didn't hold back.
"I think that he should choose baseball," Theismann said. "I think that he would struggle in the NFL."
As of now, many mock drafts are projecting the Heisman Trophy winner to be selected in the first round. His believers see him as an electric option who's entering a league perfectly suited for his skillset.
Theismann is not in that camp, though.
"I understand a lot of guys work from the 'gun. You're away from the line of scrimmage," he explained. "But, sooner or later, defensive coaches in this league are going to figure out how to keep you in the pocket. And if you can't throw from the pocket, or you can't see from the pocket, it's going to become a problem."
Murray's height, which Theismann touched on, is a main concern for those skeptical of how he'd handle life in the NFL. Of course, being in the 5-foot-9 range matters far less on a MLB diamond.
Theismann also thinks that the Oklahoma product will need to be in an offense with a strong running attack. That's something any rookie passer needs to succeed, and without one, Theismann isn't sure if Murray can carry the load on his own.
In the end, Theismann told NBC Sports Washington that Murray is "making a mistake" by setting his sights on the gridiron. He simply doesn't see things going well for Murray as a signal caller.
"I think in professional football, it'll be a real challenge and an uphill climb for him to be able to do the things that he wants to do and a team wants him to do," he said.
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