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Hall, Moss In the Mix On Punt Returns


With Antwaan Randle El continuing to struggle on punt returns, head coach Jim Zorn said on Tuesday he wants to use DeAngelo Hall and Santana Moss in that role more often in the coming weeks.

Randle El remains atop the depth chart on punt returns, though.

"If we can use all three of those guys, that's really what I want to have done," Zorn said.

Who lines up for the first punt return in this Sunday's game at Atlanta?

"That remains to be seen," Zorn said.

Zorn discussed punt returns on Tuesday's edition of "The Jim Zorn Show" on ESPN 980 with hosts Kevin Sheehan and Thom Loverro.

This year, Randle El has returned 11 punts for a 5.2-yard average, among the lowest in the NFL. He also has 11 fair catches, second-most in the league.

"With the role of Antwaan, if he was purely a punt returner and he had production, then he would continue on," Zorn said. "And it's not totally his problem, but with some of the production problems that we've had there, I'm starting to interject other guys."

Hall was in position to return a punt in the Oct. 26 game against the Philadelphia Eagles but he did not get a chance after Sav Rocca's kick sailed out of bounds.

Hall has not returned a punt since the 2007 season, when he had five returns for an 8.1-yard average. For his career, he has 13 returns for a 9.5-yard average and a long of 27.

At Virginia Tech, Hall was a prolific kick returner with a 15.1-yard average and five touchdowns.

As for Moss, Zorn wants to get him at least "one or two punt returns in every game," he said.

Moss is accomplished as a punt returner in the NFL, even though he just a 3.8-yard average on four returns this season.

Moss has a career 11.7-yard punt return average and three touchdowns in his career. He had an 80-yard punt return for a touchdown last year in Detroit.

Zorn said he would not be comfortable using Hall and Moss as full-time return specialists.

"The risk involved in putting Santana out there or even DeAngelo, my starting cornerback, it can be very volatile to have your punt returner get in there and then get nicked up," Zorn said. "We still want a spark and we still want to create field position. And yet there's risk involved as well."

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