Philadelphia Eagles News

Will Jackson Return Punts On Sunday?

Special teams coordinator Bobby April expects DeSean Jackson to play this Sunday against the Colts, but at this point he does not know whether he will resume his punt return duties. If Jackson does not return punts, rookie Jorrick Calvin will take over once again.

"Coach (Andy Reid) and I discussed that the other day. He wasn't really sure how he wanted to use him. He's practicing right now. He and Jorrick are both practicing to take them. I'll let him comment on it because he'll make the final decision."

Calvin is averaging a DeSean-like 13.3 yards per punt return this season, which includes a 44-yard return against the Falcons that set up a touchdown. However, Calvin muffed a punt late in the game against the Titans which pretty much ended any chance for a comeback.

"Certainly, he's got to hold on to it more. That would be his demise," April said. "He's got to hold on to the ball. He's got to shore that up for himself and for the football team."

Calvin will resume the kickoff return duties as well if Ellis Hobbs does not play. Hobbs is sidelined with a hip flexor injury. Calvin has averaged 22.9 yards per return with his career long of 41 yards coming in that same game against the Titans.

"Jorrick is just a talented guy. He's got running back skills. He runs it like a running back. He goes north and south. He makes a diagonal cut at top speed. He doesn't do a lot of fancy stuff to avoid," April said. "He's more of a downhill runner. That's what gives him the ability to do the kickoff returns and his ability to catch the ball."

Hobbs' likely absence will give Dimitri Patterson the chance to start on defense at right cornerback. Patterson had been the Eagles' best special teams player with a team-high 120 production points this year. April indicated that rookie cornerback Trevard Lindley would take most of Patterson's special teams reps. The fourth-round pick has only been active for three games thus far and has one special teams tackle.

"He played OK. He needs to play more. This will be good for him ... You have to give him an opportunity to get better. You can't write him off initially," April said of Lindley. "I think he can do much better than he did, but I'm not displeased with him. He's been a good character guy. He's tried to do what we've asked and I think he'll come through."

-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 12:39 p.m., November 4

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