Lazard & Cobb Have Been Steady Options in Higher Leverage Situations

There are a lot of questions at receiver without Davante Adams, but both Randall Cobb and Allen Lazard have come up big for the Packers in higher leverage situations

Without Davante Adams, there are many questions surrounding this Green Bay Packers wide receiver position, but perhaps none bigger than who is going to be this team's bucket-getter?

It's third and six, and the Packers need a first down to prevent their drive from stalling out at midfield. Who is going to emerge as that go-to guy for Aaron Rodgers?

Well, truthfully, there likely isn't one answer as there has been in years past. Rather, it's going to vary week to week and even series to series, depending on what the matchups look like and who has the hot hand.

However, just because Adams is gone does not mean that this receiver room is void of playmaking options in those high leverage situations either. In fact, both Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb have been quite effective on third downs and in the red zone for the Packers, where they clearly have the trust of Rodgers.

Over the last three seasons, Lazard on third or fourth downs, has caught 70% of his 53 targets and is averaging an impressive 15.9 yards per catch with eight touchdowns. Of his 37 receptions, 35 have gone for a first down. Meanwhile, in the red zone, he has caught 14 of 23 pass attempts for eight touchdowns.

“He’s been making those contested catches. The more you do that, the more opportunities you get,” Rodgers said via Packers Wire last season.

During Cobb's first season back with the team, he would catch 12 of his 17 third down targets and gained 10 first downs along with averaging 16.9 yards per catch. Then inside the 20-yard line, all four of his receptions went for six. 

“I pride myself in being a third-down guy throughout my career" Cobb said via Packers News, "I don’t know where I rank, or where I am, but I think I do have a lot of catches on third down. That’s kind of the money down. We always talk about keeping the chains moving, and that’s a very important down for our offense to be able to stay on the field and put points on the board.” 

Now, the two big questions facing Lazard and Cobb -- even with their past success in these higher leverage situations -- is can they still remain highly effective with what is likely to be many more opportunities? And can they still produce at a high level with more of the attention on them now that Adams is in Las Vegas?

In part, it's going to be up to Matt LaFleur's receiver-friendly system to help get each of them into space and Rodgers continuing to play at a high level.

Ultimately, only time will reveal the answers to those questions, but the Packers do have two players in that receiver room who have been efficient in moving the chains in the past.

Neither Cobb nor Lazard certainly isn't Davante Adams -- duh -- but they know LaFleur's system, have a strong rapport with Rodgers, and have been successful in these higher leverage situations in the past. All of which is a recipe for them to continue being successful on third downs and in the red zone.

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Born and raised in Green Bay, WI and I still call it home. After my family, watching the Packers, sharing my opinions on the team through my writing and interacting with other fans is my greatest passion. You can find me on Twitter at @Paul_Bretl. 
 

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Comments (7)

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Coldworld's picture

June 20, 2022 at 11:48 am

If Cobb is on the field then he’s likely the first option, but the Packers are going to have to be more inventive than this seems to imply. Perhaps Jones and Dillon provide part of the option through a two back set and I would expect to see Deguara and Tonyan (once healthy) used to provide alternative options in such situations even if there’s no rookie that earns adequate confidence early.

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PatrickGB's picture

June 20, 2022 at 01:03 pm

Are they superior players? No. Yet they are good and have had many clutch performances over the years. They will probably provide a good bridge until the next batch of WR’s get up to speed. As the article noted Matt’s system should help get them some opportunities.

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Johnblood27's picture

June 20, 2022 at 01:25 pm

Hey Paul, can you look up what Adams numbers were on 3rd down targets, like you did Cobb and Lazard?

That would be enlightening within the context of your article.

Watkins - IF he can stay healthy - might be another veteran 3rd down reliable target.

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Packers0808's picture

June 20, 2022 at 02:20 pm

Have a feeling with Rodgers Watkins is going to have hell of a comeback year!

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Leatherhead's picture

June 20, 2022 at 05:23 pm

Cobb is a noted Bear killer, and it wouldn't surprise me if his best friend on the team...the guy who owns the Bears......helped make that happen again. That alone is worth being a fan.

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Johnblood27's picture

June 21, 2022 at 05:26 am

I love when duh bares have hope.

their tears are sweet.

oh no! its randall cobb again!

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ImaPayne's picture

June 21, 2022 at 12:06 pm

We will need Cobb and Lizard to step up. We could have some real shinning stars in the wings and then we could have a crop of WTF's.
Gonna find out sooner or later which it is.

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