The Green Bay Packers announced wide receiver Jordy Nelson suffered a quad injury during Sunday's 34-23 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, a setback with the potential to alter the fantasy football outlook for Randall Cobb and Davante Adams.
Let's check out how the news could end up impacting Green Bay's other top WR targets.
Cobb put together his most productive season in 2014 when he tallied 91 catches for 1,287 yards and 12 touchdowns. While he failed to match those numbers over the next two years, he's remained a valuable weapon out of the slot for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers.
Pro Football Focus highlighted his success working the middle of the field coming into the season:
Pro Football Focus @PFF
The Ravens reportedly plan to use Jeremy Maclin in the slot. Since 2014, only three wide receivers have scored more TDs when lined up there. https://t.co/RoqwAHjoYk2017-6-16 19:16:09
The comfort level with his role combined with a likely increase in targets during a potential Nelson absence could lead to some monster games for the quick-twitch playmaker. That's in part due to what should be an uptick in the number of looks he'll get down the field.
On the flip side, the University of Kentucky product does come with injury concerns, and that's a notable issue when it comes to getting more touches. In July, he talked about trying to stay on the field with more regularity, per Wes Hodkiewicz of the Packers' official website.
"One of the two most important abilities for any player in this league is durability and availability," Cobb said. "I've had a little bit of an issue with that the last couple years being banged up and missing a few games, trying to play through games I probably shouldn't have been in. That's something I have to try to do. I have to try to stay healthy and do everything that I can."
Along those lines, the Packers announced he suffered a shoulder injury in the second half of Sunday's contest, which is a situation fantasy players should monitor (along with Nelson's setback). Cobb hauled in six of his nine targets for 60 yards before exiting. He also added one carry for 10 yards.
That said, the random nature of injuries makes it virtually impossible to base fantasy decisions on that alone. So, as long as Cobb remains healthy and in the Green Bay lineup in the future, he should be considered a solid No. 2 receiver until Nelson is cleared for a full return.
Adams failed to crack 500 yards in either of his first two NFL seasons and scored just four total touchdowns in those initial years after the Packers grabbed him in the second round of the 2014 draft.
The 24-year-old California native finally enjoyed his breakout campaign last year, though. He racked up 75 catches for 997 yards and 12 scores to showcase why Green Bay invested a high pick in him and establish himself as a key piece of the offense moving forward.
Rob Reischel of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel passed along comments from wide receivers coach Luke Getsy during the offseason about the wideout's overall growth as a player.
"He has the vertical leap and the short-area quickness that make him very special, but I think it was, like I said, he made himself a much more well-rounded football player and wide receiver and I think that was the biggest difference," he said. "That enables you to be consistent and scary for a defender to line up across from you."
Adams has shown he can provide immense value in the red zone, and his usage in that area should go up even further for as long as Nelson is unavailable. On Sunday against the Falcons without Nelson for most of the game, Adams caught eight passes for 99 yards and a touchdown.
Like Cobb, he should fall safely in the No. 2 fantasy receiver category for the time being, with a chance to push toward No. 1 territory depending on how the extra targets get divided.