Whisenhunt trumps Peterson for rookie of the year

Nov 28, 2011, 9:39 PM | Updated: 10:29 pm

This Arizona Cardinal has done it four times this season,
each time over 80 yards and he currently leads the NFL
with 558 total yards.

The player is Patrick Peterson and the name of the game is
punt returns.

Peterson returned his fourth punt for a touchdown Sunday
against the Rams, tying an NFL record for punt returns for
a touchdown in a single season.

Head coach Ken Whisenhunt knew Peterson was a good
returner, but had no idea he could be this special.

“I didn’t know that he was going to return four for
touchdowns,” Whisenhunt said. “It’s pretty clear that he
has those abilities to do that quickness, strength, great
hands, I can say now after his fourth one I’m not
surprised I couldn’t say that at the start of the season.”

Obviously by now most punters realize the danger Peterson
presents and will probably try to keep the ball away from
him. Although that wasn’t the story Sunday, even after
Peterson warned punter Donnie Jones not to punt to him.

However, Whisenhunt says sometimes keeping the ball away
is easier said than done.

“I watched their punter in pre-game and he was obviously
trying to kick it to the sideline, but it’s not an exact
science,” Whisenhunt said. “Every once in a while you’ll
miss you and it’ll you go down the middle and you just
hope that it doesn’t hurt you. It’s a tough deal when you
have someone back there that can return it like Patrick.”

Whisenhunt believes Peterson is a legitimate threat for
rookie of the year.

“I don’t have a vote in it but I would certainly push for
him,” Whisenhunt said. “He’s had a huge impact with our
team on our wins and I know we don’t have a lot of wins
but what he’s done tying a record in the NFL that’s pretty

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Whisenhunt trumps Peterson for rookie of the year