Bears challenge NFL record for ‘return’ TDs

Devin Hester of the Chicago Bears

Chicago's Devin Hester... Image via Wikipedia

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a biweekly blog published every Wednesday and Sunday with a bonus “SIX STATS…” posting every Friday.

Last Sunday the Chicago Bears offense watched as the defense and special teams put up three TDs on the scoreboard in their 37-13 win over the Lions. (Devin Hester returned a punt for TD; Major Wright and  Charles Tillman each returned interceptions for a touchdown.) The three return touchdowns upped the Bears total for the season to seven, tops in the NFL. It also put them on pace to challenge for the all-time record of return TDs in a season, 13, set by the 1998 Seattle Seahawks.

Following are the number of return TDs for each NFL team this season:

7:     Chicago

5:     Green Bay

4:     Baltimore, Cincinnati, Detroit, New York Jets

3:     Arizona, Buffalo, Denver, Houston, New Orleans, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Tennessee

2:     Indianpolis, Kansas City

1:     Atlanta, Dallas, Minnesota, New England, New York Giants, Oakland, Pittsburgh, San Diego, Seattle, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Washington

0:     Carolina, Cleveland, Jacksonville, Miami

The 1998 Seahawks, who went 8-8 that season, scored eight TDs via interceptions, two by punt return, two by fumble recovery return and one by kickoff return. Last year’s Arizona Cardinals team had 12 return TDs putting them second all-time in this category.

Following are the teams that scored the most TDs via interception, fumble recovery, punt return, kickoff return, blocked kick or missed field goal return in an NFL season.

Team, Season… Return TDs

Seattle-1998… 13

Arizona-2010… 12

St. Louis-1999, Kansas City-1999, Kansas City-1992… 11

Buffalo-2004, New Orleans-1998, Denver-1997, San Diego-1997, Kansas City-1986, Denver-1976… 10

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