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Top 10 Punt Returners in NFL 2022 Rankings

Jakeem Grant leads the way as we rank the Top 10 NFL Punt Returners of the 2021-2022 season going into the 2023 NFL season. Also where Devin Duvernay, Ray-Ray McCloud, and more rank

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By Fan Rankings | July 02, 2022 - 05:18 PM

The attention of the NFL fans turns all to the heavy built offenses around the league year in and year out.

One position that is often overlooked is the punt returner position despite the fact that many great offensive weapons handle that responsibility.

While many can debate who the best punt returner right now is, no real one answer can be used to answer that question.

 


Headlining at the top of the Top 10 NFL Punt Returners 2021-2022 Rankings is Jakeem Grant who split time with both the Miami Dolphins and Chicago Bears over the course of the 2021 NFL schedule.

As you look at the punt returner position it is key for teams to have a good one back field punter and one that can change the field position with just one miss tackle. 



With that said, here is our list of the Top 10 NFL Punt Returners 2021-2022 Rankings.




Honorable Mention

Jalen Reagor

Team(s): Philadelphia Eagles

2021 Stats: 227 Yards, 39 Long, 7.3 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

Just missing the cut on the Top 10 NFL Punt Returners 2021-22 rankings list is the Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver and punt returner Jalen Reagor.

Reagor, who the Eagles drafted during the 2020 NFL draft with the team first round pick, put together solid numbers as a returner while having the speed and agility to make a big play happen on any return.

Reagor finished the 2021 NFL season averaging 7.3 yards per punt to go along with the 8th most punt return yards (227) and 4th most returns of at least 20 yards (3). 




Deonte Harris

Team(s): New Orleans Saints

2021 Stats: 199 Yards, 26 Long, 9.5 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

In his third year with the New Orleans Saints during the 2021 NFL schedule, Deonte Harris (formerly Deonte Harty) continued to prove he was a solid punt returner as well as wide receiver and kick returner.

Harris posted 199 punt return yards on 21 punt returns. In addition, Harris ranked tied with a handful of other punt returners with two punts returns over 20 yards and 8th overall in punt return average per return (9.5) among all returners with at least 15 punt returns.




Top 10 NFL Punt Returners

10. Demetric Felton

Team(s): Cleveland Browns

2021 Stats: 227 Yards, 24 Long, 7.1 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

Landing at number 10 on the Top 10 NFL Punt Returners 2021-22 rankings list is the Cleveland Browns running back and punt returner Demetric Felton.

Felton was busy in 2021 for the Browns posting the second most punt returns in the NFL (32) while only recording two fair catches.

His decision making and playmaking skills helped him average 7.1 yards per return including three returns of at least 20 yards helping to change the field for the Browns.




9. Ray-Ray McCloud

Team(s): Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers

2021 Stats: 367 Yards, 23 Long, 9.7 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

The former Clemson Tigers wide receiver has been busy over the past two seasons as the Pittsburgh Steelers primary returner both on punts and on kickoffs.

During the 2021 NFL schedule, Ray-Ray McCloud led all punt returners with 38 total punts while recording an NFL high 367 punt return yards.

Despite the high number of punts, McCloud still managed to finish the season ranked 7th in the NFL with a 9.7 average punt return per return mark.




8. Hunter Renfrow

Team(s): Las Vegas Raiders

2021 Stats: 303 Yards, 41 Long, 9.8 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

As vital as Hunter Renfrow was to the Las Vegas Raiders passing attack, he was also a vital role in the team's returning game.

Renfrow finished the 2021 NFL season with 31 total punt returns while averaging 9.8 yards per return.

In addition, Renfrow finished the season ranked 5th in the NFL in total punt return yards with 303 total yards while recording three different punts of at least 20 yards. 




7. Mecole Hardman

Team(s): Kansas City Chiefs

2021 Stats: 157 Yards, 31 Long, 12.1 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

One guy who has the speed and electric play making ability to rank much higher on this list is Mecole Hardman of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Only thing holding the Chiefs wide receiver and punt returner from that higher ranking is the limited number of returns during the 2021 NFL season.

Hardman finished the season with only 13 total punt returns but managed to average 12.1 yards per return and 157 total punt returns. Despite only 13 returns, Hardman still managed to rank inside the Top 10 with three returns of at least 20 yards.




6. Kalif Raymond

Team(s): Detroit Lions

2021 Stats: 236 Yards, 48 Long, 11.2 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

In his first season with the Detroit Lions in 2021, Kalif Raymond took over the primary role as the team’s leading punt returner.

Raymond did not disappoint posting 21 total punt returns over 16 NFL games, while finishing the season with 236 punt return yards.

Over those 21 total punt returns, Raymond also finished 4th in punt return yards per return averaging 11.2 yards per return. 




5. Gunner Olszewski

Team(s): New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers

2021 Stats: 309 Yards, 27 Long, 11.9 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

Only three players in the NFL had at least four punt returns of at least 20 yards with Gunner Olszewski being one of those three.

Over his three seasons with the Patriots, Olszewski continued to develop as a returner while showing his abilities as one of the game’s best punt returners right now.

Last season, the Patriots returner recorded 309 punt return yards on 26 punt returns. In addition, Olszewski is just one of four players in the NFL to average double digit yards per return (11.9) with at least 15 punt returns. 




4. Braxton Berrios

Team(s): New York Jets

2021 Stats: 201 Yards, 28 Long, 13.4 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

Landing at number four on the Top 10 NFL Punt Returners 2021-22 rankings list is the New York Jets punt returner and wide receiver Braxton Berrios.

Berrios finished the 2021 NFL season ranked 3rd in the NFL in average punt returns, posting a 13.4 total mark.

His ability to make opposing defenders miss on punt returns helped him to the 200-yard mark finishing with 201 punt return yards on just 15 punt returns.




3. Brandon Powell

Team(s): Los Angeles Rams

2021 Stats: 133 Yards, 61 Long, 22.2 Yards Per Return, 1 TD

How high could Brandon Powell have landed on the list of the best punt returners in the NFL had he recorded more punt returns.

That said, the Los Angeles Rams punt returner lands at number three after posting one of the only two punt returns in the NFL last season and finishing the season with 133 total yards.

To go along with the 133 yards, Powell averaged 21 yards per return during the 2022 NFL season.




2. Devin Duvernay

Team(s): Baltimore Ravens

2021 Stats: 360 Yards, 42 Long, 13.8 Yards Per Return, 0 TD

When it comes to who the NFLs best punt returner is right now, two players make serious arguments to take home that honor.

One of those players is the Baltimore Ravens All-Pro returner Devin Duvernay. Duvernay, who made the Pro Bowl team as a returner, trailed only Ray-Ray McCloud in total punt return yards with 360 total.

In addition, Duvernay ranked 1st in the NFL in average punt returns, recording a 13.8 average mark, 1st in the NFL in punt returns of at least 20 yards with six and also posted one return over 40 yards.




1. Jakeem Grant

Team(s): Miami Dolphins, Chicago Bears, Cleveland Browns

2021 Stats: 309 Yards, 97 Long, 11.9 Yards Per Return, 1 TD

Landing at number one is one of only two players in the NFL to record a punt return for a touchdown in 2021 in Jakeem Grant Sr.

Grant Sr. who split time between the Miami Dolphins and Chicago Bears finished the season with 309 total punt return yards to go along with a 11.9 punt return average.

In addition, Grant posted a 97-punt return touchdown while only posting two fair catches compared to 26 total punt returns.



How would you rank these Punt Returners going into the 2022-2023 NFL season? Rank below to be added in the Power Rankings.

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