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Report: Patriots tried to trade for Randall Cobb last year

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Report: Patriots tried to trade for Randall Cobb last year

--  Randall Cobb is likely one of the odd men out in Green Bay this offseason, but there was a point where a parting of ways almost happened a lot sooner than expected.

In his offseason mailbag, Jay Glazer of The Athletic noted that the New England Patriots actually tried trading for the Green Bay Packers' most seasoned receiver either at last year's trade deadline or in the previous offseason.

The Patriots, who were reportedly in the market for an impactful receiver, eventually went on to win their sixth Super Bowl in the last 18 years.

The Packers may have already felt inclined to move on from Cobb, given how last year's free agent period went. They opted to release Jordy Nelson -- now an Oakland Raider -- as opposed to Cobb, who, at one point, served as one of the league's most dynamic slot weapons.

Interestingly enough, the Packers decided to hang on to Cobb despite the fact that they more than likely knew they wouldn't offer him a third contract.

Cobb only played nine games in 2018 after spending much of the season battling a reoccurring hamstring injury from September through November. He missed another game due to a concussion suffered in a week 15 game against the Chicago Bears.

Cobb returned to action after the Packers' bye week -- two days before the October 30 trade deadline and a week before the Packers traveled to Massachusetts to play the Patriots.

As a result, his production dipped significantly, only accounting for 38 catches for 383 yards and a pair of touchdowns. His receptions-per-game average was his lowest since his rookie season, as was his yards-per-game metric.

Cobb had blossomed into one of Aaron Rodgers' most trusted targets since being selected in the second round of the 2011 draft. His catch percentage entering 2018 had ranked amongst some of the best receivers with a specified number of targets in league history.

After playing out the final year of the four-year, $40 million dollar deal he signed in 2015, it's very likely Cobb is given the opportunity to test the market. The Packers will presumably want to venture in a new direction when it comes to their offensive arsenal, which will have new life under Matt LaFleur.

Glazer also noted that he expects the Packers to "truly be players" in free agency this year. If they move on from Cobb, they could be in the market for a wide receiver; that could leave them either shopping for one or relying on the draft to fill the void left behind by Cobb.


Zachary Jacobson is a staff writer/reporter for Cheesehead TV. He's the voice of The Leap on iTunes and can be heard on The Scoop KLGR 1490 AM every Saturday morning. He's also a contributor on the Pack-A-Day Podcast. He can be found on Twitter via @ZachAJacobson or contacted through email at [email protected].

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (48) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Guam's picture

Missed opportunity to get a draft choice.

JimR_in_SoCal's picture

That depends on the Patriot's offer.

Skip greenBayless's picture

The offer was a cobb of corn and some Kraft butter plus a year of free massages for Aaron Rodgers at some place in Orlando. Should have taken it.


Gort's picture

I initially gave this a "like", then remembered that everybody gives "dislikes" to Dash!

Coldworld's picture

I think that they didn’t want to drop two experienced receivers at once. Hindsight is a wonderful simplified, but we would have thought them nuts to go in with one experienced receiver.

Of course injuries did that for us and Cobb was out often a good couple of games. That they were that thin suggests they were wise to keep on in principle, even if it proved inadequate protection in the end.

TheVOR's picture

Depend when they made the offer, if it was in preseason, the Packers would have never made the trade. If it was mid to late season, the Patriots would have never made the trade.

They had just dumped Nelson, no way would they have gutted Cobb off the roster. Just saying..

crayzpackfan's picture

Guam. What difference does the draft choice make when now we’re getting absolutely nothing for him

PackerAaron's picture

Not true. He’ll be added to the comp pick mix.

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

Hopefully we actually do something in free agency and there are no comp picks

albert999's picture

Packers were ignorant to let Jordy go and keep cobb
cut/trade cobb now or get a pick for him at least

SterlingSharpe's picture


Demon's picture

I sincerely hope Gute listens to such a well informed fan as Albert. Teams trade draft picks for UFA's all the time. SMH

albert999's picture

vanilla duster your intelligence is clearly not well informed

Coldworld's picture

Why? Cobb was younger. Did you know he was going to be injured? He looked great in game one. Overall they made a logical choice. In the end fate ignored the odds. That happens when you have few younger players coming through for a while (and the one that seemed to have, Allison gets injured too). Gute obviously saw the problem in that he took 3 receivers.

albert999's picture

Trade cobb for guard Kevin Zeitler from the browns

Demon's picture

What are you going to offer the Browns? Cobbs uniform? Or his parking space? Generally speaking (although im no expert) a player must be under contract in order to trade them.

Heck I'm all for Gute trading Brett Favre for Aaron Donald, defensive deficiencies solved.

Coldworld's picture

Maybe Albert as a consultant?

Since '61's picture

Albert really doesn't have a clue does he? Thanks, Since '61

Skip greenBayless's picture

Wow!! this is rather embarrassing news for Gute. Makes him look a little incompetent. This is a move that should have been made. Looks like Gute will have to wear his sunglasses at night so he can so he can.,,,,,, Missed opportunity.


WestCoastPackerBacker's picture

How does this make Gutekunst look incompetent? It never said what the trade offer was; whether it was more than what GB might get in a comp pick. At the beginning of 2018, there was little experience beyond Davante and Cobb (Allison was it) and most GMs would not trade away a dynamic slot receiver when they don't have an obvious replacement on the roster. IF you think it means they should have kept Jordy, he was largely ineffective last season. And older than Cobb; going downhill faster.

jannes bjornson's picture

Nelson had zero dead money at the time. Just an accounting move that backfired.

Coldworld's picture

Old Father Time. It was a toss up. They chose the twenty something player. Fate screwed it up but the.logic was probably in their favor.

SterlingSharpe's picture

If anyone says it wasn't an error letting Jordy go, then they're a liar or an idiot.

Now this team needs a legitimate quick slot guy who can separate in there from linebackers.

Skip greenBayless's picture

Well call me an idiot or a liar (I've been called worse by the way) but I don't see anything wrong with letting Jordy go. He's offically an old slow white guy. He clearly lost his speed after the injury. We all saw it and it was devastating to see Jordy get caught from behind. The biggest error IMPrO was keeping Cobb or as we found out a few hours ago, Guty not trading Cobb to New England for a draft pick. Now we get NOTHING!! Clearly Gute did not read The Art Of The Deal.


johngalt's picture

Can’t for the life of me see why you’d ever be called anything worse than “liar”. Crazy world we live in.

TheBigCheeze's picture

Dash....why the mention of race??.....racist idiot

Old School's picture

I'm your huckleberry. Gutekunst inherited a situation at WR that was going to require replacing two high dollar WRs with rookie contract guys.

There was a school of thought that went "Jordy can't get open anymore" and pointed at the lack of success he had getting into the end zone. Obviously, Gute thought Cobb was the one to keep so he subtracted Nelson, added Graham.

Truth be told, Jordy only caught 3 TDs all year and about 50 yards/game. Cobb got hurt and missed time. Amid all the dysfunction I don't think doing it the other way would have made a difference.

Now, one year into his tenure, Gute has a WR group that only has ONE guy getting paid but still a good group with loads of potential.. To me, this looks like long range thinking on Gute's part.

Old School's picture


porupack's picture

Well, maybe they offered Brady for Cobb. Damn, awful offer. We already had 3 QBs so we wouldn't have been any better off with Brady on the bench. Since this article started us off with rumors and few facts...may as well feed this story....and all enjoy ensuing invectives at GM, coaches, retired players, and each other, oh...and our QB too; why miss this opportunity, folks?

Since '61's picture

Unless I'm missing something we will still get a comp pick for Cobb.

Besides, after letting Jordy go we needed another receiver with experience.
The problem with this article is that we have no idea what was offered for Cobb or when.

Cobb is a good player and a good Packer. Unfortunately, time and the number of hits have caught up with him. I wish him well whenever he lands in the future. Thanks, Since '61

Coldworld's picture

It didn’t work out, but there are no crystal balls. It was probably the more logical choice once they rightly decided they couldn’t pay both. But heck, seems some people can’t see past sentimentality.

Jordy would not have saved our season had they cut Cobb and kept him. He also would be gone this year too. He had the bigger cap hit and was considerably older and looked to have lost two steps.

Demon's picture

Im with you sterling! Gute really messed up by cutting jordy! Jordy must be brought back ASAP! Dammit lets bring back Donald Driver too!

Coldworld's picture

I remember Donald’s last season. It was the one before the one after which he retired really.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Well, I guess one of us is a liar or crazy.

Bure9620's picture

We don't know the offer, could have been a 6th rounder for all we know, hard to discern as this was likely put out by an agent. Could be Cobb's agent trying to inflate his worth in FA, why else leak this now??

Skip greenBayless's picture

What the hell is it with all these leakers behind the scenes. I hope the Packers don't have leakers. Ted Thompson was one guy who never ever leaked that's for damn sure.


Coldworld's picture

He never said anything unless forced to outside of the facility.

Nick Perry's picture

He didn't leak but then again we wouldn't even be having this conversation of a trade like that with Thompson as GM.

mamasboy's picture

I wonder if the Packers were worried about another bad reaction by Rodgers, ala his reaction to Jordy leaving. Instead of robbing the Patriots blind by dumping a rapidly declining injury waiting to happen on them, maybe they chose to avoid stirring the pot with Rodgers , and kept him instead.

Coldworld's picture

Patriots are not known for throwing picks, for all we know it was essentially an offer to take the contract.

mamasboy's picture

It was essentially an offer to take the contract??? Are you saying they were just willing to take him off our hands for nothing?

Lare's picture

The Packers should have gotten rid of Cobb 3-years ago.

Thanks Ted.

Old School's picture

Watching Cobb rip the hearts out of the the opener is reason enough to be glad he is on the team. He could probably be resigned for $7 mil/year. His familiarity with Rodgers alone has to be worth something.

mamasboy's picture

Apart from a game here and there (the bears game is an example), Cobb has been WORTHLESS for a couple of years now. If it weren't for Rodgers bromance with him, he would have been cut a few years ago.

dobber's picture

It doesn't say--specifically--when the Pats tried to get him...just two possibilities: the offseason (when people were optimistic that this could be a decent team) or at the trade deadline (when Cobb was coming off injury and the team was taking on water).

Given that Julian Edelman had a 4-game suspension to start the year, my guess is that they tried to get him last off-season. I suspect that, given the Packers had already let Nelson go, the deal would've had to have been pretty good at that point for the Packers to make that move.

Coldworld's picture

They would not have accepted potentially because the reason they kept him was to avoid starting with Adams and Allison as the only receivers with experience. Timing is everything.

I seem to recall rumors that the Packers were trying to trade Cobb during the last draft. Perhaps NE wanted him for nothing.

dobber's picture

We agree!

D Ernie's picture

Who cares. The only players that matter are those that can contribute. Jordy lost his speed and separation, Cobb got creamed to much, Perry, hurt from shaving, king fell on his face often, Brice has no size or toughness.
A lot of dead wood

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