Chargers turning to Nick Rose for kickoff duties

Eric D. WilliamsESPN Staff Writer2 Minute Read

COSTA MESA, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Chargers are signing Nick Rose to handle kickoff duties in Sunday's playoff game against the New England Patriots, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter.

The move could help a kicking game that allowed the most returns in the NFL during the regular season.

Chargers rookie kicker Michael Badgley has been productive on field goals and extra points.

In 10 games played during the regular season, Badgley made 15 of 16 fields goals (94 percent), including a franchise-long 59 yarder in a Week 14 contest against the Cincinnati Bengals. Badgley also made 27 of 28 extra points (96.4 percent).

However, Badgley had a touchback on only 9 of his 54 kickoffs during the 2018 regular season. That 16.7 percent rate was the worst in the NFL among players with at least 10 kickoffs in 2018.

The Chargers are concerned with explosive Patriots return man Cordarrelle Patterson, who averaged 28.8 yards per return during the regular season, including one taken back for a 95-yard touchdown.

"They have one of the best kick returners that I've seen in a long time," Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn said this week. "So that's going to be a heck of a challenge for our special teams. It's a good thing we have one of the better cover units in the league right now, but that's going to be a heck of a challenge."

The Chargers did hold returners to 21.7 yards per kickoff return in the regular season, the eighth-best rate in the league.

Rose kicked in two games for the Chargers at the end of the 2017 season, making 1 of 3 field goals and 5 of 6 extra points. Rose had touchbacks on 8 of his 9 kickoffs for the Bolts last season.

He also played in eight games for the Redskins as an injury replacement for Dustin Hopkins.

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