The Atlanta Falcons took a shot at the hours of darkness on Cordarrelle Patterson last offseason and he quickly become one in all the NFL’s best value deals. Signing a one-year, $3 million contract, Patterson arrived in Atlanta as a top kick returner but quickly morphed into the team’s most versatile offensive weapon.
Because of this of his emergence on the offensive side of the ball, Patterson recorded a career-low 18 kick returns in his opening season with the Falcons. After signing a two-year, $10.5 million contract to come back back to Atlanta earlier this offseason, Patterson said he plans to return kicks in 2022, based on ESPN.
Patterson, who has eight profession kick returns for touchdowns, is one shy of the all-time record, a mark he’s determined to beat. He’ll likely be joined back deep by second-year pro Avery Williams, who converted to running back earlier this offseason. Williams was Atlanta’s primary kick returner in 2021, averaging 21.3 yards per return.
A season ago, Patterson became the primary player in franchise history to record each 500 rushing and receiving yards, posting profession highs in rushing (618) and receiving (548) yards.
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The 31-year-old Tennessee star’s playmaking ability was on full display, and he’s carved out a transparent role within the Falcons’ offense. With Smith promising to maneuver Patterson around in yr two, it’s possible he receives fewer carries, but should remain one in all Atlanta’s top weapons, now threatening opponents in two phases.
The query Patterson must answer is whether or not or not he can replicate the success of his 2021 season. Despite the Patriots and Bears attempting to use him in the same role at previous stops, Patterson didn’t find his groove until reaching Atlanta.
Further, after a hot start, Patterson posted fewer than 30 rushing yards and two receptions in each of his final 4 appearances. Patterson’s mission for 2022 shall be silencing doubters surrounding the power to repeat and sustain his prior campaign.
He’ll enter the season poised to return to his natural habitat – the far end zone, waiting on a kickoff. All that stands between himself and history is 100 yards, a feat that, once achieved, will mark his final kick return. For Patterson, 2022 has a probability to be just as special because the yr before, and his time to prove he’s up for the challenge starts this week at training camp.