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Galax Steeler
11-13-2009, 03:44 AM
By: Mike Bires


Friday November 13, 2009 12:26 AM



PITTSBURGH — Already this season, 10 kickoffs have been returned for touchdowns in the National Football League.

Unfortunately for Stefan Logan, he’s yet to experience the thrill.

That’s not to say this 28-year-old rookie has been a bust.

Logan’s average of 26.1 yards is the highest for a Steelers’ primary kickoff returner since 1989 when Hall of Famer Rod Woodson averaged a league-leading 27.3.

“No way. Really? Even better than Randle El?” said backup linebacker Andre Frazier, one of the Steelers’ best special teams players. “Stefan has a better average than Randle El? I did not know that.”

Antwaan Randle El, a wide receiver now playing with the Washington Redskins, was an exciting return specialist when he played in Pittsburgh (2002-2005). He holds the team record for most TDs scored on kick returns but only one of those came on a kickoff (the other four were on punts).

Randle El’s best season as a kickoff returner was in ’04 when he averaged 25.1 yards.

“I’m doing all right, but I have to do a lot better,” said Logan, also a wide receiver.

“That (26.1 yard average) is not good enough. I want to be the league leader. I want to do a lot better. I want to average 30 to 35 yards a return. We’re capable of doing it. I’m doing the best I can. We just have to keep it up. One of these games, we’re going to take it to the house.”

When Logan arrived in the off-season, he was a long-shot to make the team. His only previous pro experience was in 2008 when he played running back for the British Columbia Lions of the Canadian Football League. He didn’t even return kicks in the CFL.

During training camp, the 5-foot-6, 189-pound Logan made the most of his opportunity in electrifying fashion. He locked up a roster spot with an 80-yard punt return in the fourth preseason game.


“I want to get positive yards every time I touch the ball,” Logan said. “I want to get the crowd on their feet and take one to the house. And even if I can’t take one to the house, I want to put the team in good field position.”

Though he has yet to score, Logan has been a solid returner. The Steelers rank sixth in the league in kickoff return average, a significant increase from last year when they were 21st. The Steelers rank 23rd in punt return average, but that’s better than last year when they were 30th.

“We keep saying that I’m always close to breaking one, but close isn’t good enough,” said Logan, who’s averaging 7.9 yards on punt returns. “I want to break one. I don’t want to be close.”

In the NFL this season, there have been only six TDs scored on punt returns. By comparison, there were 16 last year.

A year ago, there were only 13 kickoffs returned for TDs in the league. This year, there have been 10, two against the Steelers (98 yards by Cleveland’s Joshua Cribbs, 88 yards by Minnesota’s Percy Harvin).

Logan’s three longest returns have been 40 yards in the opener against Tennessee, 56 yards against Cincinnati and 51 against Detroit.

“Stefan is a valuable guy for us,” special teams coach Bob Ligashesky said. “He’s done well in the return game, but we’re searching for the ceiling.”

In this decade, only three Steelers have returned kickoffs for touchdowns (Allen Rossum in 2007, Randle El in 2002 and Will Blackwell in 2000). Logan wants to be the fourth.

“I wasn’t aware,” Logan said when told about the 10 kickoff returns for touchdowns. “I need to make it 11. We need to get us one here.”

http://www.timesonline.com/sports/sports_details/article/1424/2009/november/13/steelers-get-good

Texasteel
11-13-2009, 04:38 AM
I believe Logan has done a very good job for us. We have been starting drives with better field position than we have in years, and sooner or later he will take one the length. When he does, don't be suprised if he puts two or three together. I like the kid and I think he will be better from here forward, and even better next year.

sharkweek
11-13-2009, 04:47 AM
The absolute best return guys get maybe 3 or 4 TD returns in a season at best, and those usually come in bunches. With 8 games to go plus potential playoffs there is still a lot of football yet to be played for Logan to make his mark.

Rotorhead
11-13-2009, 06:10 AM
I am absolutely thrilled we arent worried about fumbling the punts and kickoffs back to the other teams this year. Him standing there and actually catching the ball is an improvement over last couple years haha. Some teams best offensive plays were our ST fumblitis! I hope he breaks some for the length, but am happy for his production up to now.

Kaeg
11-13-2009, 06:32 AM
Hasn't returned one to the house yet!? BUST!! Get rid of him! :flap:
(Sounds like a few posts I've seen around here.) :chuckle:

HometownGal
11-13-2009, 06:42 AM
Our return game has greatly improved with Logan back there. As long as he continues to gain positive yards and give us half-decent field position, I'm happy. :thumbsup:

The_WARDen
11-13-2009, 07:33 AM
ehh...I think he's adequate. Being better than the drek they trotted out there last year does not make him good.

steelballs
11-13-2009, 08:32 AM
ehh...I think he's adequate. Being better than the drek they trotted out there last year does not make him good.

I have to agree with your opinion on this one.

Logan was great in pre-season, but his production in the regular season has been as you say...adequate. His small size is a factor as he rarely breaks a tackle.
I do like his ball security, but as all have seen, when the critical kicks come, Mewelde is in the game to field them.

KeiselPower99
11-13-2009, 08:52 AM
He has a better average then Randle El did? Im sure he will bust one sooner then later.

Mobyguzzer
11-13-2009, 09:31 AM
My 8 year old is switching from Ben's jersey to Stephan's USD college jersey for the Bungles.........he promised me that will make him break one...