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Returner Job Appears to be Ty Montgomery’s to Lose

Ty Montgomery

When the Green Bay Packers drafted Stanford receiver Ty Montgomery in the third round, there was some head scratching.

The Packers certainly have plenty of receivers on hand, including two Pro Bowlers and three other guys they drafted just last year. Then you look at Montgomery’s resume and it becomes evident. The Packers drafted him for his return ability.

And that’s likely the primary reason they drafted him.

Montgomery averaged 27.4 yards per kickoff return during his Stanford career. He took three back for touchdowns. And although he only returned punts during his senior season, Montgomery averaged a whopping 19.8 per return and scored two touchdowns.

Those are impressive numbers.

What isn’t impressive is how bad the Packers were on kick returns last season. They tried to force running back DuJuan Harris into the role and he was an unmitigated disaster, eventually being replaced by Randall Cobb late in the season. The Packers were good on punt returns, primarily because of Micah Hyde, but they were also exposing two key contributors in Hyde and Cobb, who split those duties.

So now they have the luxury item in Ty Montgomery. The guy who’s just here to return kicks and maybe punts.

Coach Mike McCarthy sounds like he’s ready to hand Montgomery the job.

“He’s a powerful young man, especially for a receiver,” McCarthy said. “He doesn’t go down very easily. With that, being built a lot like a running back, I think that’s what I personally favor in the return game. So I think he’s a heck of a young player, and I think we were fortunate to get him in the third round.”

“We will be better on kickoff return,” McCarthy said. “And Ty will definitely have the opportunity to help us improve.”

So there’s your kick returner. The only question, in our eyes, is if Montgomery gets the punt return job too.

Hyde has averaged 13.6 per punt return in his two NFL seasons. More importantly, he has three touchdowns, so he’s clearly a threat to house one at any given moment.

The smart money says Hyde’s role on defense will contribute to determining his role on returns. We’re going to assume he’ll be given an opportunity to start at cornerback opposite Sam Shields. We’d be surprised if he doesn’t end up, at the very least, as the Packers nickel back.

If that is indeed the case, then why risk him as a punt returner when you’ve got Montgomery?

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Monty McMahon

Monty McMahon is one of the founders of Total Packers. He is probably the most famous graduate of UW-Oshkosh next to Jim Gantner.

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17 Comments

  1. MMTTDCSUCK May 15, 2015

    I am curious as to why Janis is not in this mix. He returned well with the few opportunities he had in pre-season last year. So much so that I recall MM mouthing “WOW” (or something like that) as Janis ran past him on one of those returns . . .

  2. Big Gay Clay May 15, 2015

    Hyde is too slow.

  3. MP May 15, 2015

    I was at Lambeau for Hyde’s punt return against the Lions. He is definitely NOT too slow.

    1. PF4L May 15, 2015

      Running one back 55 yards, is far different than running one back end zone to end zone…Just sayin

      1. MMTTDCSUCK May 15, 2015

        Yep, and how many times did he get the ball, and then have the opportunity to run it out? I bet you can count them on one hand.

  4. Howard May 15, 2015

    Unless Ty makes an overwhelming case for being a punt returner in the preseason games, MM should be reluctant to throw Ty in at returning punts early in the season.

    Catching and returning punts in traffic and on the big stage can be more difficult than kickoffs. The quickest way to having a young returner lose confidence is have him muff a couple of punts. With punts it is a lot better to have someone sure handed in traffic. Hyde is a proven, and sure handed punt returner. Let Ty work his way into returning punts over the course of the season.

  5. Deepsky May 15, 2015

    Montgomery is interesting. At the combine he ran a pedestrian 4.55 40. He also ran some slow times on other occassions. But at his Pro Day, after he lost 10 pounds, he ran a lighting fast 4.28. This is in Sam Sheilds territory.

    1. Phatgzus May 15, 2015

      4.38*

    1. Kreg May 15, 2015

      I tell you what……This is an impressive tape. Not only does he make lots of plays, but when they are big ones and he scores he does the Ole’ Barry Sanders- hands the ball to the ref or just sets it on the ground. No showboating what-so-ever. Chest bump celly with his team mates, that’s all.
      Seems like a Packer kinda guy. I’m looking forward to his Packer highlight film.

  6. Big Gay Clay May 15, 2015

    That’s Ty’s highlights, dudes going to be sick. Hyde is good but doesn’t have the extra gear like this man right here

    1. Phatgzus May 15, 2015

      Actually, Montgomery reportedly “doesn’t have breakaway speed”, he’s just very, VERY smooth and shifty, especially in a straight line.

  7. Big Gay Clay May 15, 2015

    Did you watch the tape? They just said that bc of his combine 40. Either way I think he’s going to be good for us

    1. Howard May 16, 2015

      The bad thing about highlight tapes is they just show the highlights.I watched a highlight tape on pick 1 Randall and guess who muffed a punt and Randall recovered. That’s right Ty. When you watch the highlight tape of Hundley you see Randall totally whiffing on two or three tackles and getting beat on a TD pass. It is better to watch the game tape if available it gives you a different perspective.

  8. jtmax May 15, 2015

    I still don’t know why we drafted another WR given we drafted 3 last year. Janis is the fastest, biggest dude we have and I want to see him get the chance.

  9. tequila May 17, 2015

    He is a baller and helps us in an area of need-returns. Plus Ted stacks receivers as insurance policies. I agree we didn’t see Janis enough last year.