Chicago Sun-Times

On Dent and Hester

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More from "Waddle and Silvy" on WMVP (AM 1000).

Former 49ers tight end Dwight Clark and quarterback Joe Montana were asked about Richard Dent's qualifications as a potential inductee into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

"Absolutely," Clark said. "I mean without question he should be there. He was with us [49ers] for a while, and he's a character and great guy and just an awesome player. Absolutely, so if I had a vote, that's a slam dunk, that'd be easy."

Waddle asked Montana if Dent was somebody he had to account for on every play.

Montana: "Oh yeah, we saw coach Ditka today and he said it best - 'He's the kind of guy that's so good, he makes the guys around him better.' And, you had to worry where he was and where he lined up, and a lot of the times he was the key to their defense, and how they were, who's blitzing and who's coming by how he lined up a lotta times. But good for him, good for him."

Later, Hall of Fame receiver Michael Irvin had this to say about Devin Hester going back to being a returner only:

"Money's not gonna let him do that, in this salary cap era," the former Cowboys receiver said. "They're not gonna pay him that kind of money and just say 'return punts.' It's not gonna happen. It's not gonna happen. Maybe you'll get it now with your new offensive coordinator, but you have to get specialized coaching. Nobody does everything, but everybody does certain things. We already know one special thing Devin does - return game. Now, you wanna play him at receiver, find out only the special things he does, and burden him with those. Stop asking him to be the total package at receiver when you have a receiver full-time that's not the total package. You have to let him be what he can do, do what he can do, and you push him towards this. Lemme tell you why it's best this way - because I only live in your confidence, when I do this. When I only ask you to do what you can do, I live in your confidence. That way, I'm making you the strongest player you can be at all times."

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7 Comments

I'm all with Dent getting into the Hall his play was just as important to the success of the 85' BEARS as hampton and Singletary, the guy came to us in a round of the draft they no longer have and terrorized QB's throughouth the league for years, they talk about Freeney and Ware today but those guys are nothng compared to DENT......Dent played the run, forced fumbles, and sacked the QB, I think it was the RAMS playoff game when he dove over a guy and forced a key fumble that led us to the shutout victory,......the man was just fun to watch....it time to get this one done Hall voters way past time

I'm starting to buy into the idea of Hester having a dual role on this team. Let him return on both kicks and punts, plus play a "slash" type of role on offense.

What the hell is Irvin talkin about? Someone please read that quote and honestly tell me you can understand it.

Irvin sounds like he is having reality issues in his own mind? Earth to Irvin, come in please. What he is smoking must be a real mind bender.

Dent was poetry in motion, simply awesome. He was the best at swatting the ball away from the QB that I have ever seen. His presence was a huge factor in how dominant the Bears defense became in the 80's. The only area that became a little bit of a concern at times was his ability to stop the run, many times other teams ran right at him.

Dent deserves to be in the Hall for sure, no questions asked.

yeah, Irvin is saying that Hester should not spread himself too thin, and I agree, as we all saw Hester not being as good a return man after he went WR. Irvin saw it too, Devin in my opinion will not be the same threat as a return man as long as he is a WR, and I feel if we utilize Hester in the slant in the windy city he will be dangerous in Martz system. If Devin can play both positions great then do it, but money wise, the bears would have to up his contract, and he would have to study less on one side or the other. Manning didnt look too shabby but it sounds like maybe the bears want him back at return and he is agreeing??? bad idea I feel (as does Irvin) but what do I know?
Good recall chitown bear on Dent, geez wouldnt it be nice to see a DE do that now? Dent would get to the QB no matter what, you can say he had great tackles which was true, but still it was plays like that where Dent was a ProBowler and the DE's we have now are not. I remember the arm under the Tackles outside shoulder getting leverage and going around the Tackle for the sack. Still need a DE??? what is up with that???

Adam,

I actually thought Irvin made sense. What he is saying is quit trying to make Hester something he is not and use him sort of like the Browns use Cribbs. Let him do his returns and use him on spot situations that play to his strength.

His "confidence" thing sounded kind of esoteric, but it makes sense. The passing game at the professional level is very dependent on anticipation. The QB has to throw the ball before the receiver makes his break. There is a lot of trust involved because if it goes bad the QB is usually blamed regardless of who screwed up. That's where the confidence thing that Irvin talked about comes in. The passing game will never click until the quarterback can depend on the receivers and throw the ball on time. The receivers need to be dependable. You don't want Hester out there trying to be a number one receiver like Andre Johnson (or Irvin) because he doesn't have the skill set for it. He will never be dependable in that role. However if you use him just in places that match his skill set, he will be dependable and have the QB's trust.

MSBearsFan,

Agreed.

Adam, please re-read the quote. Irvin is not always eloquent, but he is a great analyst.

Devin has too many expectations. He has not played at a high level at receiver. He could develop into the greatest return man in history - crushing every record known to man. But as long as he's being asked to other things, other things that don't make him special, he'll never perform at HIS highest level. That makes him a liability to the Lovie Smith, Jay Cutler, and the rest of the team.

Maybe Martz can get everyone on the same page and Devin can catch 100 balls. It's not that Devin can't play receiver. He can. Just not at the same level he plays in the return game. He has shown he is an average, or possibly below-average receiver at best.

Later.

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on February 4, 2010 1:15 PM.

Hester would "Love" to be Returner Only was the previous entry in this blog.

Marshall Mending Fences with Broncos? is the next entry in this blog.

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