Steelers QB Justin Fields shuts down kick returner rumor: ‘I’m not here to do that’

 

Justin Fields is one of the more athletic quarterbacks in the NFL, but don’t expect to see him fielding kick returns in 2024.

The Pittsburgh Steelers signal caller threw cold water on the idea that he would participate in any kick-return experiments. “Nah, I’m not here to do that,” Fields said on Tuesday, according to The Post-Gazette.

Fields was responding to the rumors that seemed to be sparked by Steelers running back Jaylen Warren’s recent appearance on his other teammate Cam Heyward’s “Not Just Football” podcast. 

Warren suggested that Pittsburgh’s special teams coordinator had floated the idea of putting Fields in the returner position during kickoffs this upcoming season.

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But, Fields asserted that those comments were taken out of context.

“Nah, I think everybody kind of interpreted it wrong,” said Fields. “Coach Danny (Smith) was basically just trying to send a message that no matter who you are, you could be on special teams. He just used that as an example.”

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The 25-year-old also implied that the whole ordeal was a joke.

“It’s funny how serious social media takes everything,” Fields continued. “It was kind of funny to me when everybody was making a big deal about it for no reason.”

The Chicago Bears decided to trade Fields to the Steelers in March in exchange for draft picks. He is expected to back up presumed starter Russell Wilson, although Fields said he will compete for the starting job.

“I’m definitely competing,” Fields told reporters earlier this month. “Russ knows that. We’re competing against each other every day.

“I definitely don’t have the mindset of me just sitting all year. I’m coming in here every day giving it all I got and pushing him to be his best, and he’s pushing me to be my best every single day.”

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The NFL is set to introduce wholesale changes to its kick-return rules in 2024. The move comes following a series of rules changes to make kickoffs safer. But, those changes also had the unintended consequence of making returns virtually obsolete.

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