Chiefs Reveal Plan to Decrease Harrison Butker's Role

Dave Toub hinted that Harrison Butker may no longer handle kickoffs for the Chiefs
Dave Toub hinted that Harrison Butker may no longer handle kickoffs for the Chiefs / Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Like most teams, the Chiefs are actively experimenting at OTAs (offseason team activities) with the NFL's new kickoff rules that transforms kickoffs into a rugby-style event.

Kickers will now be incentivized to tackle and Chiefs' special teams coordinator Dave Toub knows that gives Kansas City a unique advantage. Hard-hitting safety Justin Reid is a capable kicker, after all, and now Toub is considering reducing Harrison Butker's role to account for the changes.

Moving forward, it's possible that Reid or even rugby star Louis Rees-Zammit will handle kickoffs to preserve Butker for field goals.

Dave Toub Teases Possible Reduction in Harrison Butker's Role

It makes a ton of sense for teams to put players on the field who can make a tackle. Toub estimates "kickers were probably involved in at least 25-to-40% of the tackles" when watching XFL games following the rule announcement.

Toub noted that Butker could still be used to kick a touchback if necessary, though the rules now place the ball at the 30-yard line on touchbacks. That's a significant change and now incentivizes teams to kickoff and make a tackle instead of booting the ball out of the back of the end zone.

Reid is the Chiefs' emergency kicker and would likely have a leg up in the competition, though Rees-Zammit's potential there is interesting as well.

Widely considered perhaps the best special teams coordinator in the league, Toub appears to be one step ahead of the competition with creating advantageous situations using the new rule. Butker has had an eventful offseason but his teammates still support him, though it's interesting that his role could be reduced to kickoffs.

We'll be keeping a close eye moving forward on the special teams portions of practice, as the Chiefs may just have a new kicker for non-field goal situations.

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