Originally written on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 11/19/14

INDIANAPOLIS - DECEMBER 07: Head coach Marvin Lewis of the Cincinnati Bengals coaches against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on December 7, 2008 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Last year, wide receiver Brandon Tate was picked up on waivers from the New England Patriots on the final day of roster cuts. He wasn't asked to contribute on offense at all, with only a handful of snaps at wide receiver and zero targets, but rather to become the team's primary kick and punt returner. Now, Tate has moved on to become a leading candidate to take the second wide receiver spot.

This year, a host of elusive, speedy players are on the team fighting for either of the two starting return positions. Head coach Marvin Lewis listed the candidates in a chat with Cincinnati.com last Wednesday:

Adam Jones will have an opportunity as well as Brandon Tate and Marvin Jones and Andrew Hawkins as punt returners. Tate, Hawkins and Aaron Brown, [Kashif] Moore and [Taveon] Rogers will get plenty of looks in kickoff returns.

Cornerback Adam Jones said earlier in the offseason that he really wants the punt return job.

"I want that job," he said. "I really want that job. I'll leave it at that. The [coaches] pretty much know I want to be back there on the punt return."

Adam Jones definitely has the vision and physical capabilities to be an elite punt returner in this league, but the big question is his injury history. If the Bengals need Jones to play significant snaps at cornerback as well, he might not be given the opportunity to return punts in the regular season.

It's good to see Andrew Hawkins on both lists. His agility and quickness is among the best in the league. Mohamed Sanu and Jordan Shipley, who both have a successful history as return men, however, were not listed.

It's also interesting that four of the five players Lewis listed for kick returns are bubble players that might not make the team. Hawkins is in a battle to become the sixth wide receiver on the roster, while running back Aaron Brown is considered an outsider to beat out Cedric Peerman and Boom Herron for the fourth running back spot. Taveon Rogers and Kashif Moore are both undrafted wide receivers who will have an even harder time making this team than Hawkins.

 

Check out other great articles at 49erslines.com.

<span st_url=http://www.60maxpowero.com/patriots/node/2230 st_title='Marvin Lewis: The leading candidates for the Bengals' punt and kick returners are...' class='st_twitter_hcount' displaytext="Tweet"><span st_url=http://www.60maxpowero.com/patriots/node/2230 st_title='Marvin Lewis: The leading candidates for the Bengals' punt and kick returners are...' class='st_facebook_hcount' displaytext="Facebook"><span st_url=http://www.60maxpowero.com/patriots/node/2230 st_title='Marvin Lewis: The leading candidates for the Bengals' punt and kick returners are...' class='st_stumbleupon_hcount' displaytext="StumbleUpon"><span st_url=http://www.60maxpowero.com/patriots/node/2230 st_title='Marvin Lewis: The leading candidates for the Bengals' punt and kick returners are...' class='st_tumblr_hcount' displaytext="Tumblr"><span st_url=http://www.60maxpowero.com/patriots/node/2230 st_title='Marvin Lewis: The leading candidates for the Bengals' punt and kick returners are...' class='st_email_hcount' displaytext="Email">var switchTo5x=true; stLight.options({publisher:''});
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Australian cricket player dies from head injuries

Wrigley Field bleacher renovation may be delayed

Yankees wanted Rollins but Phillies' price was too high

Pop misses game for medical reasons; Messina takes over

John Beilein upset with ESPN for late start time to game

Tyson Chandler felt like Knicks' scapegoat at times

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Fred Jackson has 'no respect' for Donte Whitner

Devon Still responds to unpaid child support allegations

Diamondbacks sign Cuban slugger Yasmany Tomas

Josh Gordon felt alienated by some in Browns organization

Jerry Jones: I'm a big admirer of Robert Griffin III

Raiola fined for uneccesarily striking Pats' Zach Moore

CM Punk opens up about leaving WWE, says he'll never return

Steelers turned down chance to be called 'America's Team'

Report: Small chance Raiders-Rams could be moved to Indy

Todd Gurley begins rehab after surgery on knee for torn ACL

Brodeur to practice with Blues

OSU player posts Michigan player's girlfriend as his 'WCW'

Jim Harbaugh's family may not eat turkey thanks to NBC

Ole Miss' The Grove threatened by Mississippi State fan

Is it time for the Redskins to move on from Robert Griffin III?

Top 10 fantasy football turkeys for 2014

WATCH: Coyotes lose in ugly fashion, score own goal in OT

Warriors are having tons of fun on team plane

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

CM Punk opens up about leaving WWE

Wrigley renovation may be delayed

Steelers could have been America's Team

John Beilein upset with ESPN

Should Washington move on from RG3?

Dominic Raiola fined for cheap shots

Game of the week: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

Rose leaves with injury again

WATCH: Pierce signs for fan during game

Report: McCoy to start over RG3

Braxton Miller headed to Oregon?

10 most one-sided college football rivalries

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.