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Brandon Banks: a shining light on special teams

Brandon Banks was heading for the hero of the game award Sunday.The Lions took the lead in the fourth quarter and seemed to be finding a rhythm when Banks struck in a major way. He returned a kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown to quickly give the Redskins the lead back. In most cases, when a team is fighting to get points like the Lions and Redskins were on Sunday, a quick loss of the lead on a kickoff or punt return can have a demoralizing effect. Although this was not the case in this game, the fact is that Banks did provide a spark, giving Washington a weapon it has not had for years. It was the first kickoff return for a touchdown for the franchise in 70 games. Banks totaled 271 return yards on the day, setting a franchise record.

Banks's fourth quarter kickoff return solidified his impact on the game. He did more than the offense to keep the Redskins in the game. He returned the ball well all day long to keep the Redskins in good field position.

The headlines of the Donovan McNabb benching and the now very much alive QB controversy will overshadow Banks's efforts. But his performance deserves a post on "Hard Hits" praising a very positive aspect of the game. For a game that ended in disappointment on the scoreboard for the Redskins, there was a little fella by the name of Brandon Banks that stood taller than any other Washington player. In fact, if not for a costly block in the back penalty by Reed Doughty, Banks not only would have had a kickoff return for a TD, but also a punt return for a TD that may have been the difference in the game.

Going forward it would seem the Redskins have at least found a very big piece of the puzzle on special teams.

By LaVar Arrington  | November 1, 2010; 2:50 PM ET
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Next: Football Insider Live: the McNabb benching


look for banks to return a few more this year for TD'S..that is if hamm-o-KLAN does not release him or move him to NT.

Posted by: wathu19 | November 1, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Good thing Shanahan picked him up as an undrafted rookie.

Posted by: thorhero | November 2, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

You can criticize Shanahan for the boneheaded McNabb benching, but he deserves credit for finding Banks as an undrafted rookie FA. It's clear that Banks is a game changer -- something we don't have on offense right now. Maybe the bye week will give the Skins the opportunity to incorporate his world-class speed into some offensive sets. Screens, reverses, pitches, etc. I know he has ball handling issues, but the little guy can take it to the house on any given plan. Besides, he's short, so he's closer to the ground, which makes it easier to catch McNabb's dirt balls.

Posted by: Kenbeatrizz | November 2, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Lavar- thanks for pointing Banks out. He's a game changer every time he touches the ball. Lets get Banks touches on the offense. Bubble screens, quick slants and reverses similar to how the Chiefs use Dexter McCluster.
Lavar still playing chess? Check my chess paintings ... Alicia Keys picked one up.

Posted by: One9 | November 2, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

LaVar thanks for including this post on Banks. He's a game changer everytime he touches the ball. Last time we had this much speed on returns was when Joe Gibbs used Darrel Green to run them back. (Respect to Brian Mitchell and Mike Nelms *** flashback). Skins need to work on ways to get him the ball on offense. Bubble screens, slants, and reverses similar to how the Chiefs work with Dexter McCluster.

***LaVar still playing chess? Check out my chess paintings... Alicia Keys has one.

Posted by: One9 | November 2, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

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