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Peterson presents ‘a great challenge’ to Cowboys

If Patrick Peterson didn’t have every team’s attention
before, he most certainly has it now.

“It’s pretty apparent how good a player he is,” said head
coach Jason Garrett, whose Dallas Cowboys team is next in
line charged with the task of defending the NFL’s top punt
returner (in terms of total yards).

“It’s a great challenge,” Garrett answered during a
conference call with Arizona reporters this week. “It’s
easier said than done, then say, ‘Hey, we’re going to punt
it out of bounds or we’re going to do this with the ball
or do that with the ball.’ Those are hard things to do.”

Peterson has made it hard for a lot of teams.

The Cardinals rookie has quickly become one of the better
return men in the game. Four times now he’s returned a
punt for a touchdown, tying the league’s single-season
record; and he’s become the first player in NFL history
with four punt-return touchdowns of at least 80 yards in a
single season.

“Those are difference making plays in the game,” Garrett
said.

Peterson’s latest work — an 80-yarder against the Rams
Sunday — earned him his second “NFC Special Teams Player
of the Week” award. He was then named “NFC Special Teams
Player of the Month” for his record-breaking performance
in November.

“He’s such a dynamic returner, seems to have such a
comfort level with the ball,” added Garrett. “He can
break tackles, has great vision, great speed and
explosiveness. It’s very important for our coverage teams
to play well and keep him contained. He’s really
exceptional. We’re going to have our hands full in that
area.”