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Former Miami Hurricane Devin Hester retires from NFL

Ari Russell

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Mike Carter-USA TODAY

The best return man in NFL history is finally calling it a career after 11 seasons. Former Miami Hurricane Devin Hester officially retired from the NFL on Tuesday. His next move will be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.

Hester from Riviera Beach Florida came to the University of Miami in 2003 where he would play all aspects of the game on offense, defense and special teams. His sophomore season he was named First Team All-American by the Walter Camp Association and the Sporting News in 2004 as a kick returner.

His prolific career at Miami would conclude in 2005, where he would end it with six kick returns for touchdowns, a blocked kick return, one rushing and one receiving TD. He also recorded five interceptions. While in Coral Gables, he earned the nickname “Hurricane Hester”

His short dynamic time with Miami got him drafted in the 2006 NFL Draft in the second round as the 57th overall pick of the Chicago Bears. He was drafted as a cornerback however it was widely assumed at the time he was going to be an overall weapon when.

Most of Hester’s career would be with the Bears, In fact it was eight years in total in Chicago. After he would play for the Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens and the Seattle Seahawks. When all was said and done Hester ended his career with a bunch of records:

  • Combined special teams return touchdowns, career: 20 (14 punts, 5 kickoffs, 1 missed field goal)
  • Most non-offensive touchdowns, career: 20
  • Most kickoff and punt return touchdowns, career: 19
  • Punt return touchdowns, career: 14
  • Punt return touchdowns, season: 4 (2007)
  • Kickoff return touchdowns, game: 2 (Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams, December 11, 2006)
    • tied with many other players
  • Combined return touchdowns, season: 6 (2007) (4 punts, 2 kickoffs)
  • Combined return touchdowns, rookie, season: 5 (2006) (3 punts, 2 kickoffs)
  • Combined return touchdowns, game: 2, twice
    • 2, Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams, December 11, 2006 (2 kickoffs)
    • 2, Chicago Bears vs. Denver Broncos, November 25, 2007 (1 punt, 1 kickoff)
  • Non-offensive touchdowns, season: 6, twice
    • 6, 2006 (3 punts, 2 kickoffs, 1 missed field goal)
    • 6, 2007 (4 punts, 2 kickoffs)

Here are some of his highlights from his days with the Canes:


Hester is the also first player to take the opening kickoff for a TD in the Super Bowl. These records above will be very difficult to break considering Hester’s longevity and consistency. There is no doubt Hester will get a bust in Canton. Whether he’s a first ballot is another thing, but he is the best return man to ever play the game and there really is no argument.

Born in the Nation’s Capital, Washington D.C., Ari Russell watched the rise of the 1980’s Miami Hurricanes and knew that he had to be part of the “U” someday. After graduating from Coral Gables, Ari rose through the ranks of the former XM Satellite Radio and then Sirius/XM as college football executive producer. He later spent 2 seasons as the publisher of the website “Beyond U Sports” focusing on major college football/basketball. Ari brings a great perspective on everything Miami, including the Dolphins to F.F.I.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. crosseyedlemon

    December 13, 2017 at 2:17 pm

    I’ve been a Bears fan since 62 so I have seen many good ones come and go. Devin was something special and a potential game changer anytime he made a return.

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