For example, the special teams unit has plenty of roles and players that don’t get much media attention. One of those jobs is the gunner on punt return coverage.
These grinders have one of the tougher tasks in football. They flank the sidelines on punts and their job is to sprint down the field as fast as possible and either tackle/contain the returner or down the ball if it bounces.
Generally, gunners have to beat a one-man press or a double-team of blockers to do this.
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You Forgot One on Special Teams
On December 1, the Kansas City Chiefs official Twitter account highlighted the “specialists” that are eligible for a Pro Bowl vote. They were kicker Harrison Butker, punter Tommy Townsend, long snapper James Winchester, returner Mecole Hardman and gunner Marcus Kemp.
Team leader Tyrann Mathieu felt that one deserving name was left off the list, however, fellow-starting gunner Chris Lammons.
“@Lammons_1 + #ProBowlVote,” Mathieu commented under the tweet.
You see, most franchises have two starting gunners — unless they utilize some sort of rotation at the position. For the Chiefs, Kemp and Lammons are the go-to guys and Mathieu wanted to make sure no man was left behind.
Lammons, a cornerback by trade, tweeted a response at his teammate and defensive leader. “Real 1 Fasho,” the gunner wrote with the 100 emoji.
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Teammates & Fans Rally Around Lammons
Sometimes all it takes is one person to speak out and Mathieu was that voice in the case of Lammons. After he addressed the snub, teammates and fans of Chiefs Kingdom rallied around the special teams warrior.
“Best gunner in the league,” Townsend stated with the 100 emoji while retweeting Mathieu. Lammons is a punter’s best friend so it’s only right that he joined the cause.
Chiefs fans also got involved. ‘Steve in RI’ responded to Mathieu, writing: “Great call @Mathieu_Era. He has killed it on [special teams].”
“You [have] been incredible this year,” replied a second supporter (‘Logi’) with a fire emoji.
Another (‘MahomesGOAT’) stated: “Deserve that [bleep] the most. You’ve been a stud on [special teams].”
One more fan named ‘John Maker’ added: “Absolutely a pro-bowler, let’s get him in Chiefs Kingdom.”
Even if it doesn’t mean a Pro Bowl appearance, it’s nice to see an under-the-radar piece like Lammons receive some public recognition and it all started with Mathieu. The playmaking sparkplug known as the Honey Badger has also been vocal throughout the defensive turnaround.
Mathieu’s leadership should be key down the stretch.
As for Lammons, the former undrafted free agent out of South Carolina began his NFL tenure with the Atlanta Falcons but has only played in games with the Miami Dolphins and Chiefs. The CB/gunner has always been a top-notch special teamer with 19 career tackles and a fumble recovery. He also has one career NFL interception on his resume with the Dolphins.