For today's entry into the 30 Day Challenge, we're going to take a look at a part of the game that might not get the amount of attention that it should. After all there are three phases to every NFL game, but generally people focus a lot of their attention on offense and defense.
So, here's today's question for the 30 Day Challenge.
Who is your all-time favorite Minnesota Vikings' special teams player? This can be any aspect of special teams, whether it's a kicker, a punter, a returner, or someone else that made their mark mostly on special teams.
My answer is probably going to elicit a few groans from the peanut gallery, but to me he's a pretty solid example of what a special teamer should be. That player is current Vikings' punt returner Marcus Sherels.
Sherels wasn't highly heralded coming out of the University of Minnesota, starting out the 2010 season on the practice squad, getting released once and being brought back, and finally made the active roster as a punt returner in 2011. He's managed to stick in the position for the past few years, and is now third all-time in team history in punt return yardage (trailing only Leo Lewis and David Palmer), and he's tied with Palmer and Mewelde Moore for the most punt return touchdowns in team history with two.
While Sherels isn't the biggest guy on the field or the fastest guy or anything like that, he does whatever is asked of him when the coaches ask him to do it, and he always does it to the best of his ability. That's the sort of tenacity you want to see out of a special teams player.
I've often said that if we ever do have a nuclear winter, only three things are going to survive. . .cockroaches, Twinkies, and Marcus Sherels. Seriously, every year we sit here and say, "Well, this is the year that Marcus Sherels finally gets replaced, because so-and-so is going to take his job." And then every year on final cutdown day, we sit here and say, "Well, Marcus Sherels is going to make the team. . .guess we shouldn't be that surprised."
Marcus Sherels is one of those guys, at least for me, that you really want to root for and see succeed. He's what a special teams player in the NFL should be, in my opinion, and that's why he's my answer to today's question.
How about all of you?