Return motion utilizes a receiver going inside towards the formation and then returning back outside. Different systems also call the motion “counter” or “peel”. The motion forces defenses to transfer the receiver multiple times. Often, when a player crosses the center line, defenses will bump a player over or change their coverage to that side since the strength has been changed. Since return motion crosses the center line and then returns back to the same side they were on, it forces defenses to communicate and make multiple calls all while being a simple tag for the offense.
Return motion, similar to fly or short motion, can also create leverage for the offense. It gets receivers on the move and forces defensive adjustments. Offenses can also use it to create better blocking angles on the perimeter and to help diagnose defensive coverages.