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5 things to know about Randall Cobb

Packers re-acquire versatile playmaker in trade with Texans 

WR Randall Cobb
WR Randall Cobb

GREEN BAY – Randall Cobb is coming home.

The Packers have agreed to a trade with the Houston Texans to re-acquire Cobb, who spent the first eight of his 10 NFL seasons with the Packers.

A second-round pick (64th overall) in 2011, Cobb has caught 563 passes for 6,793 yards and 47 touchdowns in 130 regular-season games (81 starts).

Here are five things to know, or remember, about Cobb:

1. He's one of Aaron Rodgers' all-time favorite targets.

Cobb was a rookie during Aaron Rodgers' first MVP season in 2011 and had a career year during his quarterback's second MVP campaign in 2014.

The two connected on one of the most memorable plays in modern Packers history in the 2013 regular-season finale at Soldier Field, when Rodgers hit Cobb down the field for a game-winning 48-yard touchdown on a fourth-and-8 to beat the Chicago Bears in a winner-take-all game for the NFC North crown.

Known for his attention to detail and a sixth sense with Rodgers on the field, Cobb finished his initial run in Green Bay seventh all-time in receptions (470) and tied for 11th in both receiving yards (5,524) and touchdown catches (41).

"I'm really excited Randall's coming back," said Rodgers on Wednesday. "He's obviously a dear friend and a guy I still believe in that can really play. … So, to get Randall back is really special. It's something that I talked about back in February, wanting to bring in a true slot receiver, I thought would make our offense more dynamic. I think Randall's a dynamic player – he has been when he's been healthy."

2. Cobb is still just 30 years old.

The 5-foot-10, 192-pound receiver was the first player born in the 1990s to be drafted into the NFL when the Packers selected him in 2011. Cobb, who was just 20 at the start of his NFL career, caught 470 passes for 5,524 yards and 41 touchdowns in 105 regular-season games in Green Bay. He made his lone Pro Bowl appearance in 2014 after catching 91 passes for 1,287 yards and 12 touchdowns.

After dealing with injuries during his final season with the Packers, Cobb bounced back with 55 catches for 828 yards and three touchdowns during his lone season with Dallas in 2019. He signed last year with Houston, where he played 10 games before landing on injured reserve with toe injury.

3. He epitomized versatility during his time in Green Bay.

Cobb did it all for the Packers. He not only was a slot receiver who could line up in the backfield (59 carries for 352 yards), but Cobb also returned kickoffs and punts.

In fact, Cobb set a franchise record with a 108-yard kickoff return for a score in his first game with the Packers. He also would return a punt for a TD in each of his first two NFL seasons.

Cobb's 89 career punt returns in Green Bay are fifth most in franchise history, behind Willie Wood (187), Antonio Chatman (110), and Al Carmichael and Phillip Epps (100). His 25.88-yard kickoff return average is also fifth in the team annals.

With the Packers' roster often skewing young, Cobb developed into a team leader at an early age and was voted a team playoff captain in 2014 at just 24 years old.

Cobb and longtime teammate Jordy Nelson played a pivotal role in the development of another future Pro Bowl receiver, Davante Adams, with whom Cobb played four seasons in Green Bay.

Aside from Adams, the Packers do not have a receiver older than 27 on their 90-man offseason roster.

"I'm ecstatic, man," said Adams of Cobb's return. "He's got a lot left in the tank, back healthy from last year and just if nothing else the veteran leadership in that room. We've got a lot of young guys … so just having him back in here to kind of help with some of the other guys, to help advance them and teach them, show them the way he's a great leader. A leader by example."

4. Cobb is like a big brother to rookie receiver Amari Rodgers.

Adams isn't the only Packers receiver Cobb has helped mentor. He also is a close friend of rookie receiver Amari Rodgers, whose father, Tee Martin, coached Cobb at Kentucky.

Fittingly, Cobb was one of the first people to reach out and congratulate Rodgers after he was drafted in the third round by the Packers in April.

"He's like a big brother to me," said Rodgers of Cobb shortly after the draft. "My whole middle school career, my whole high school career, he's always been in my corner giving me tips on the game and stuff like that."

5. He's not the first former Packers player to have an encore in Green Bay.

The Packers have been known to bring back their own over the years.

Cobb joins receiver James Jones (2007-13, 2015), cornerbacks Tramon Williams (2006-14, 2018-19, 2020) and Davon House (2011-14, 2017-18), quarterback Matt Flynn (2008-11, 2013-14) and running back Ryan Grant (2007-11, 2012) as veterans who returned for a second stint with the Packers over the last decade.

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