Aaron Rodgers has returned, but it took the front office bending to the MVP’s will to run it back. Of all the angles and the contract quirks that will be included, by far the most awesome and hilarious request is his demand that the Green Bay Packers trade for Randall Cobb. And it sounds like it’s basically a done deal.
There’s no doubt that Rodgers and Cobb were super tight when No. 18 was in Green Bay. He became one of Rodgers’ most reliable targets during Cobb’s eight seasons with the Packers and was utilized in myriad ways, including in the slot and the backfield. After the Packers opted to not renegotiate a contract with Cobb after the 2018 season, he joined the Dallas Cowboys for one season and then the Houston Texans last year. All signs now point towards a reunion in Green Bay, and it should be electric.
Rodgers is getting one of his buddies back and the front office finally catering to one of his requests, but we have to be realistic about what Cobb can offer at this point in his career. This is a roster with Davante Adams, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Allen Lazard, Devin Funchess, and newly drafted Amari Rodgers all in the wide receiver room. Cobb will be 31 years old at the start of the season and his most productive days are behind him. This was about Rodgers finally having his voice heard.
Imagine how the conversation between Rodgers, Brian Gutekunst, and Mark Murphy must have gone down.
Rodgers brings up wanting his old teammates back and references Cobb. Gutekunst and Murphy reassure the superstar quarterback that they will continue to find ways to add weapons to the offense. Rodgers clarifies by saying if Cobb doesn’t come back, he doesn’t come back. Gutekunst and Murphy are left scrambling for a way to get Cobb out of Houston.
Packers fans love Cobb. He will always go down as one of the best receivers to wear the green and gold. But with Rodgers clearly flipping the script on who holds the leverage, couldn’t he have taken a bigger swing?
Ask for Odell Beckham Jr. Demand that the Packers get Amari Cooper. Implore the front office to have Jordan Love line up in the slot multiple times a game at wide receiver. The Cobb ask probably caught the front office off-guard, but it really seems like Rodgers could’ve asked for just about anything, which makes it all the more comical that it was Cobb who was specifically referenced.
What if the Texans double-bird Green Bay? The deal is all but done, but what if Houston changes their mind and tells Gutekunst to shove it to see what Rodgers’ reaction would be. The idea of the Texans openly refusing to trade Cobb strictly to see if Rodgers will get pissed off at the Packers again is Houston playing chess, not checkers. They don’t need Cobb. Trading him to the Packers does nothing for Houston’s outlook next season. They don’t appear to be going anywhere this year and have bigger issues to figure out, like who the hell is playing quarterback for them. Making life miserable for another franchise, Green Bay in this case, could be the most entertaining thing they’ll do all year.
When Trey Wingo initially tweeted out on Monday that Rodgers was coming back to Green Bay if they could get Cobb, most thought Wingo had dipped into the scotch early on a Monday afternoon. Rodgers and Cobb are great friends, sure, but this couldn’t be a matter of fact could it? Apparently it was.
And that isn’t a knock on Cobb, it just goes back to the randomness of Rodgers wanting this specifically. Corey Linsley must really feel like crap right now. Rodgers demands Cobb returns but not his All-Pro center who just left for the Los Angeles Chargers. Sure, it would be almost impossible given the contract Linsley just signed and there’s not a chance the Chargers would entertain the call, but, hell, why not put the front office on the hot seat even more if you’re Rodgers?
Maybe we should be surprised Rodgers didn’t ask for more. What stopped the reigning MVP from demanding that Gutekunst flies commercial in a middle seat all year long instead of taking the team plane with the squad on the road? Pretty noble of Rodgers not to do that, to be honest.
In the end, if this helps calm the chaos for at least this year, it was a no-brainer for the front office. Rodgers gets back one of his best buddies even if he won’t be a huge contributor on the offense. And Packers fans get to quit reminiscing on the old days with Cobb and experience it all once again. As out of left field as this request from QB1 may have seemed, there wasn’t a Packers fan that wasn’t smiling from ear to ear once the news broke that Randall Cobb was coming back.