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49ers-Raiders: Breaking Down The Special Teams Battles

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One area we’ve conveniently overlooked is the battle of the special teams between the 49ers and the Raiders. The teams employ two of the best punters in the game in Andy Lee and Shane Lechler, both of whom can boom some serious punts.

The 49ers punt return game was abysmal last season and so the team traded for Ted Ginn Jr. and drafted WR Kyle Williams, both of whom are contributors in the punt return game. Ginn was meant to be primarily a kick returner, but injuries forced him into the punt returner role and he has shown he still has some skills there. If Kyle Williams is healthy this week he’ll get the go at punt returner, but if not it’ll be Ginn.

Ginn and Williams have basically split time back there because one would be healthy and the other hurt, and vice versa. Accordingly, there isn’t much of a statistical sample to compare. Nonetheless, I’m curious how the Raiders have been in return coverage. Lechler can boom some big punts but does that lead to many instances of him outkicking his coverage?