Fact: Devin Hester is the greatest return specialist in NFL history.
But, Hester’s pursuit of NFL records might not be in a Chicago Bears uniform.
The recent hiring of Marc Trestman brings changes for the Bears – and some of these changes that don’t look in Hester’s favor. Trestman’s offense is complex, with some pundits saying it could rival Mike Martz‘ playbook.
Hester might not return to the Bears, but it might be for personal reasons. When Lovie Smith was dismissed as head coach, Hester took the news so hard, that he said he would talk to family and friends about considering retirement.
Trestman will run a west-coast offensive. Granted, it’ll be a mix of different styles of play-calling, but former players and coaches under Trestman have stated receivers need to be as smart as the quarterback when understanding and remembering routes.
Hester’s route-running has always been suspect, if not terrible. His speed allowed him to occasionally make late breaks for passes, but he’s seen his share of dropped passes. He’d be best used as a fourth receiver. Once Smith and former general manager Jerry Angelo anointed Hester as a potential No. 1 receiver after he broke out as a returner, it was the start of slowly diminishing his role as a return man.
There’s still a good chance Hester could remain a Bear, and having him primarily as a returner could benefit him. Trestman and Emery will be working vigorously to upgrade what has been a poor receiving corps besides Brandon Marshall and Matt Forte.
But under the Trestman and Emery era, Hester should either revert back to only returning kicks and not used as a receiver.