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Cowboys special teams coordinator would ‘love’ to see Micah Parsons return kickoffs

Micah Parsons has been one of the best defensive players in the NFL essentially since he first stepped into the league in 2021. The star pass rusher has been an All-Pro in each of his first three seasons, and could his impact soon stretch beyond the defensive side of the ball to special teams? Probably not, but we can dream, right? 

While talking about the upcoming changes to the kickoff in 2024, Cowboys special teams coordinator John Fassel told the Ross Tucker Football Podcast that he’d love — despite knowing full well that it’s very unlikely — to see Parsons return kicks. 

“You know Micah. So, he has lobbied me in the past to just be the primary kickoff returner,” Fassel told Tucker, via NFL.com. “I’m like, Micah, that’s the question you got to go a little further up than me on that one. But would I love to see him back there? Absolutely, because he would be fantastic. He would catch it and he’d run wild and he’d probably get incredible yards. But that ain’t going to happen. I’m aware of that.”

Given how important Parsons, who has played just 15 special teams snaps in his career, is to Dallas’ defense, the Cowboys wisely won’t put him in harm’s way by allowing him to return kicks. Still, that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t thrive on special teams. Fassel added that he did see Parsons in return coverage when the Pro Bowler was still at Penn State. 

“I remember watching Micah on kickoff coverage at Penn State as a freshman because I was scouting Nick Scott, a player we had drafted to the Rams,” Fassel said. “Then I was looking at Cam Brown also, but ‘Who’s that guy on kickoff’ when [Parsons] was a freshman. Then, you know, you look him up, I don’t know who he is, but he’ll probably be alright someday. But Micah has asked about being a primary kickoff returner, that hasn’t been allowed yet, probably not going to be allowed unless you say, ‘Hey, you know in the game we’re down by six and there’s eight seconds left in the game and we got to score a touchdown and kick return to win it?’ Maybe we put Micah back there as a second returner.”

While it’d be fascinating to see Parsons in that role, it’s not exactly a big need for the Cowboys. Dallas does have Pro Bowl returner KaVontae Turpin on the roster, who is one of the best in the league in that role.  

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