Veteran WR Listed As Intriguing Kick Return Option For Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Could the Buccaneers try something new in wake of the NFL's new rules?
Dec 31, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA;  Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin (14) catches a pass for a touchdown against the New Orleans Saints in the fourth quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 31, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin (14) catches a pass for a touchdown against the New Orleans Saints in the fourth quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports / Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
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The NFL is set to implement changes this upcoming season, and one of those will be a new kickoff format that is supposed to be geared toward player safety. The new rules will likely accomplish what it is meant to, but we may also see less explosive plays come from it.

However, on the flip side, we could see teams start to turn towards star position players to help create those splash plays as a kick returner with the new regulations looking at keeping players safer — something that many haven't had experience in at the professional level.

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Per CBS Sports, an intriguing option to return kickoffs for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2024 would be veteran wide receiver Chris Godwin.

"Godwin is just a bowling ball who is used to creating with the ball in his hands, being that he's a slot receiver."

Godwin, a former third-round pick out of Penn State, has never been back to receive kickoffs or punts in the NFL. He is, however, an electric player when he has the ball in his hands as evidenced by putting up 1,000-yard receiving seasons in four out of the last five years while playing the slot and outside WR spots.

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With Deven Thompkins no longer on the team, the Buccaneers will already be looking for a replacement to return kicks and punts. And although Godwin would be an exciting prospect to fill that void, it is highly unlikely the staff will want to put him in that position considering how much he means to the offense.

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Caleb Skinner

CALEB SKINNER

Caleb is from Nashville, TN and graduated from Florida State University in 2018 with majors in Sociology and History. He has previously written for an FSU outlet and started covering the Buccaneers in March of 2022. Caleb is an avid sports fan and former host of the Tribeoholics podcast. You can follow Caleb on Twitter @chsnole