RENTON, Wash. -- For most of his career, Jon Ryan s task was to change field position with booming punts.

And then the Seattle Seahawks decided they wanted to change their punting approach. They wanted Ryan to pull back and use hang time and directional punting to take away the danger of giving up long returns.

The Seahawks have been exceptional with achieving their goal this season. Entering the season finale against St. Louis, the Seahawks have allowed only 25 punt return yards on 16 returns this season. They re on pace to set an NFL record for fewest return yards allowed in a 16-game season.

It s an obscure record but highlights the importance Seattle has put on its special teams.

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