Randall Cobb's Increased Packers Role Will Enhance Fantasy Value

Matt FitzgeraldCorrespondent IIISeptember 15, 2013

Oct 14, 2012; Houston, TX, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb (18) against the Houston Texans in the second quarter at Reliant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The increased role that Green Bay Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb is enjoying in his third season with the franchise continues to make him a hotter commodity in fantasy football.


UPDATE: Sunday, Sept. 15, at 5:03 p.m. ET, by Joseph Zucker

Randall Cobb was the second-leading receiver for the Green Bay Packers in their 38-20 win over the Washington Redskins. He finished with nine receptions, 128 yards and a touchdown. Cobb also had a kick return go for 10 yards.

---End of update---


Cobb is an all-purpose offensive weapon and a threat on special teams as a returner.

It's hard to imagine Cobb could do much more than his 80 receptions for 954 yards and eight touchdowns a season ago, but he's off to an extremely encouraging start in 2013. Against the vaunted San Francisco 49ers defense in Week 1, he snagged seven receptions for 108 yards and a touchdown.

Maintaining a pace of seven catches per contest seems a bit unrealistic for 16 games, since the maintenance of that pace would amount to 112 total for the year.

Considering how frequently superstar quarterback Aaron Rodgers puts it in the air, though, it's difficult to put past Cobb the notion of a triple-digit catch season. Even early in Week 2 against Washington, Cobb has already accumulated seven receptions for 96 yards and a touchdown.

The observation by ESPNWisconsin.com's Jason Wilde, in which he implied that opposing linebackers couldn't possibly keep up with Cobb, was spot-on:

An unfortunate development in Sunday's contest may also cause the Packers to take to the air more often.

Rookie running back Eddie Lacy suffered a concussion, and while the severity of it is not currently known, it is yet another setback to an already precarious backfield situation.

The Packers simply have not been able to complement Rodgers adequately with a respectable rushing attack in recent years. The fact that Cobb takes hand-offs on occasion not only helps that cause, but enhances his fantasy value as well.

When Green Bay lines Cobb up as a runner, Rodgers can get the ball in Cobb's hands on short passes, too. As electric as the 23-year-old phenom is in the open field, the more he can get the ball in space, the better.

Especially in keeper fantasy leagues, owners will be hard-pressed to find a younger, more promising and still developing receiver than Cobb.

Here's the bottom line: he is capable of taking it to the house on any given play.

Imagine what Cobb will do with a little bit more time in the Packers' stable system with Rodgers as the trigger man.

The departure of former No. 1 wide receiver Greg Jennings in free agency also increases Cobb's targets.

Jennings' injury difficulties forced him to miss eight games in 2012 but made Cobb a more prominent part of the Packers' offense in a de facto sort of way. Now it is a full season and beyond for Cobb to be the man.

Of course, Jordy Nelson is still a formidable receiver and James Jones—though he had zero catches in Week 1—had nine catches for 152 yards in the Washington game, through just over a half of action.

There is plenty of wealth to spread in the Packers' passing attack, and Cobb figures to be a fixture as a dynamic playmaker for the remainder of the season and for many years to come.