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REVEALED: Harrison Butker in a reduced role as Andy Reid & Chiefs drop huge hint about kicking strategy for 2024 NFL season

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REVEALED: Harrison Butker in a reduced role as Andy Reid & Chiefs drop huge hint about kicking strategy for 2024 NFL season

 

The Kansas City Chiefs might not rely on Harrison Butker for kickoff duties in the 2024 season. This shift comes in response to the NFL’s recently implemented kickoff rules, which significantly alter the dynamics of the play and involve kickers more directly in tackling.

 

REVEALED: Harrison Butker in a reduced role as Andy Reid & Chiefs drop huge hint about kicking strategy for 2024 NFL season

Chiefs’ special teams coordinator Dave Toub highlighted the impact of these changes on Thursday. He noted that under the new rules, kickers are now involved in 25 to 40 percent of kickoff tackles. This increased physical demand on kickers has led the Chiefs to consider alternative players for kickoff duties. “I prefer having someone who can make a tackle,” Toub explained. “Butker can tackle, but I don’t want him doing it all season. If you watched the XFL, you’d see kickers involved in a significant number of tackles, possibly 25 to 40 percent.”

To mitigate this risk, Toub suggested using other players like Justin Reid, who is not only capable of kicking but also proficient in covering and making tackles. “We don’t want Butker in that situation,” Toub stated. “Justin can cover, he can kick, and he can go down there and make tackles.”

The NFL’s new kickoff rules aim to reduce the high-speed collisions that have historically made the play one of the most dangerous in football. The new format restricts the movement of players on both the receiving and kicking teams (excluding the kicker and two designated returners) until the ball is touched or downed.

This rule change is expected to influence how teams approach kickoffs, with the Chiefs potentially setting a new trend. As teams adapt to the new rules, they might adopt similar strategies to the Chiefs, seeking to protect their kickers from the increased physical demands. The 2024 season will reveal how these adjustments play out on the field and whether other NFL teams follow the Chiefs’ lead in reassigning kickoff responsibilities.

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