Devin Hester will be the Chicago Bears' top kickoff returner this year, special teams coordinator Dave Toub said Saturday, refuting reports that the electric wide receiver would be dropped from such duty.
"Hester is our punt returner and he is our No. 1 kickoff returner," Toub said according to The Chicago Tribune. "He is still our No. 1 kickoff returner."
The NFL's all-time leader in return touchdowns took back one kickoff for a touchdown last season, averaging 21.9 yards per return. Hester scored two punt-return touchdowns last season.
"It's pretty simple to me," Toub said. "I just laugh when I hear all these stories out here."
There had been speculation in Chicago that Hester would be used solely on punt returns after the Bears signed free agents Eric Weems and Devin Thomas to help return kicks.
Bears offensive coordinator Mike Tice has also beaten back speculation that Hester would no longer be an every-down receiver after the team added wideouts Brandon Marshall and rookie Alshon Jeffery in the offseason.
"Devin is going to be on the field," Tice said Friday. "If he's not on the field, then they should fire me."