Good news Texans fans! You may not have a strong defense, good head coach, tons of early draft capital, or a quarterback devoid of controversy, but what you do have is one of Aaron Rodgers’ favorite targets from his past and a team willing to do anything to keep Rodgers happy.
As first reported by Tom Pelissero, the Packers and Texans are working on a deal to send 2014 Pro Bowler Randall Cobb back to Green Bay after a two-year stint in the state of Texas. Details of the deal are still unknown.
This just seems to be the latest episode of the Rodgers-Gutekunst feud. In order to please the reigning NFL MVP, Packers GM Brian Gutekunst is making an effort to provide Rodgers with not only more receiving targets, but also more targets that Rodgers is familiar with. In fact, according to Pro Football Network, Rodgers’ return to Wisconsin for training camp hinged on the Packers’ ability to trade for Cobb. During Cobb’s eight-year career in Green Bay, he caught 470 passes for 5,524 yards and 41 touchdowns. He was also the recipient of one of the most iconic Rodgers touchdown passes of all time.
I can still taste the salty tears of Bears fans everywhere. Cobb has not come close to matching his Packer production since departing Green Bay though. In two years split between the Cowboys and Texans, Cobb recorded just 93 catches for 1,265 yards and six touchdowns. Will a return to the Packers reignite his flame? Probably not. Cobb is heading into his age-31 season. He’s clearly not the same receiver he was in Green Bay. After all, if Cobb was, he would have put up much better numbers than what he did on a Houston team with only Brandin Cooks and David Johnson as viable receiving threats with Deshaun Watson throwing the football.
In a separate move, the Packers also released veteran quarterback Blake Bortles today.
Bortles was an emergency back-up plan the Packers had in case Rodgers decided not to return to Green Bay for the upcoming season.
The addition of Cobb is clearly a move demanded by Rodgers. In my opinion, it’s soft on Rodgers’ end, and gives off the same vibes I got when Rodgers voiced his discontent with the Packers front office after they traded away Jake Kumerow. Cobb is no longer a difference maker on the football field. Sure, Rodgers likes him and enjoys having him in the locker room, but he’s not someone that will open up defenses and make Rodgers’ job easier. It’s demands like these that point Rodgers out as a player who cares more about the people around him than winning. If Rodgers truly believes the addition of Cobb makes the Packers more of a Super Bowl contender, good for him. I’m glad he thinks that highly of Cobb. In reality though, Cobb is nothing more than an average slot receiver who doesn’t add much to the offense.
This is a good move for the Packers only because it brought Rodgers back into the fold. This move essentially turned the Packers from potential NFC North basement-dwellers into NFC North favorites. So sure, by that logic, this was the best move Green Bay could’ve possibly made. It sets a bad precedent though, and should make other teams weary of Rodgers when he leaves the Packers next season. What if Rodgers refuses to play on his new team unless they trade for Jake Kumerow? How far will it go before Rodgers is satisfied? That being said, Rodgers doesn’t have much left to prove in his career. If he were to retire today, he may not go down as the GOAT, but he will almost definitely be remembered as one of the most talented QBs to ever play the game, so if Rodgers wants to spend the rest of his career playing solely with players he enjoys throwing to, I can’t really blame him.