In his second game at Lambeau Field since being traded to the Packers this offseason, Randall Cobb delivered a vintage performance to help lead Green Bay to its third win of the season.
The 31-year-old Maryville, Tennessee native was a go-to pass-catcher during Sunday’s 27-17 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
It’s becoming clear as to why Aaron Rodgers wanted his friend back in town. Rodgers thinks Cobb can help him and the Packers get back to the Super Bowl
Cobb finished the day with five grabs for 69 yards and two touchdowns. It was the first time since week 3, 2015 he caught two or more touchdowns in a game.
What made the pro-bowler’s day a vintage one wasn’t his final stat line, it was the timing of his catches.
Cobb was leaned on throughout Sunday’s bout to keep drives alive. Four of his five catches — and one touchdown — came on third down.
Twice on the Packers’ first scoring drive, Rodgers found Cobb over the middle for eight and 12-yard gains, respectively. Both catches came on a shake route fans have seen many times over from the slot receiver.
His touchdown catch came on a crossing route where Rodgers found him late. Cobb caught the pass, and with a full head of steam, barrelled his way through two Steelers defenders into the endzone.
It’s becoming a trend to see his number called on crucial downs. Six of Cobb’s eight catches have come on the money down this season.
“I pride myself in being the third-down guy,” said Cobb in his post-game presser.
“I’m a piece of the puzzle. I’m going to do my job and be where I need to be.”
The Kentucky product led the team in receiving yards Sunday afternoon and was second in targets only to Davante Adams.
The Packers didn’t need to rely on the passing game as much as in other games, presenting a balanced attack with 30 rushes and 36 passes.
Now being on the wrong side of 30, Cobb isn’t the elusive athlete he was when the Packers drafted him in 2011. But, the Packers don’t need him to be a YAC receiver.
Reliable hands become more important as the weather gets colder. The younger Packers receivers haven’t been dreadful catching the ball, but Cobb will add a sense of security as the games become more meaningful.
Cobb was also a spark plug for the green and gold in his first stint with the team, but this time around it seems as though he’s taking that role to heart a bit more.
Each of his eight catches this season has been followed by an energetic flex and scream to the crowd. Of course, many receivers do it after catching a pass, but Cobb has a different flair to his catches this season.
A leader. A spark plug. Ol’ reliable.
Cobb will look to assert his presence in this offense as the season continues.——————
Joshua Frey-Sam is a journalism student and aspiring sportscaster hailing from Winnipeg, Canada. A Packers fan since 2005, Josh has worked to master the financial and scouting aspect of the NFL over the past few years. Josh remains a firm believer that Dez did not, in fact, catch the ball. You can follow him on twitter at @jfreysam.