Packers' Randall Cobb to be out 2-6 weeks, a prognosis much better than originally feared

Kassidy Hill
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
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GREEN BAY − Randall Cobb thought he was done with football. The veteran receiver was walking off the field, during the Green Bay Packers' loss against the New York Jets on Sunday, when there was a worrying pop in his ankle.

“I thought my career was over,” Cobb said Friday, updating PackersNews on his status. “Whenever I was coming off the field, I felt something pop. I thought it was bone.” 

Cobb was carted off the field to the locker room, noticeably emotional and crying, thinking his long career that brought him back to Green Bay, had ended in Year 12 on someone else’s terms. 

“I thought it was broken,” Cobb said. "I took my sock off and we saw how swollen it was immediately. I thought that was the way my career ends." 

Cobb and the doctors went directly to the locker room for evaluation, where the receiver got the first bit of good news. 

“Fortunately enough it wasn’t (broken),” Cobb said.  “I mean, we came in and got the X-rays right away. We didn't see any breaks or fractures. We were all just like scratching our heads to how I had so much swelling. When I got the MRI the next day and saw that it wasn't what we thought it was, even better.” 

On Monday, coach Matt LaFleur was cautiously optimistic as to when he’d get his leader in the receiver corps back on the field. 

"It's not going to be like a one-week deal or anything like that; I think he's going to miss some time,” LaFleur said. “But he definitely avoided a serious injury.” 

On Friday, Cobb confirmed that he’d be out somewhere from “two to six weeks."

“So we'll see. We'll see how fast I can heal up.” 

The question now for the Packers will be whether to place Cobb on injured reserve. With new abridged rules, teams must leave a player there for four weeks as opposed to six weeks like in the past. If Cobb is placed on IR with the Saturday roster moves, the earliest he could return would be after the Thursday night game against the Tennessee Titans, but with more than a week to prepare for the Sunday night matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles. 

However, if his recovery shades more toward two weeks, Cobb could return in time for the Sunday night game against the Buffalo Bills, at best, taking into account the week of rehab he has already done. 

While the latter is the best-case scenario, Cobb already has been on an expedited recovery process. He started this week on crutches, before moving to a boot Wednesday. By Friday, he was walking around the locker room without either and with a much less noticeable limp. 

"You never know what tomorrow holds, but you know in the moment what you feel like and you know, I'm just grateful I'm making progress every day,” Cobb said. “It's only been, what, four days, five days? So I'm making progress. You know, I got most of the swelling out; continuing to get better. So I'm just taking it a day at a time.”

The Packers are likely to get veteran receiver Sammy Watkins back sooner than later as well, after a hamstring injury forced him on IR for four weeks. Watkins was still on IR on Friday, but he practiced with the team all week.

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In the meantime, Cobb will continue in the role he’s held all season, as the leader and teacher in a young receivers room, even if it’s from the sideline. He can do so knowing that despite what he felt in the moment Sunday, he’ll be on the field once again. 

"Just trying to help out where I can," he said, "try to help out in meetings, trying to help out and, you know, watching practice tape and seeing what's going on and being a voice whenever I'm needed. That's pretty much all I can do.

“Just thankful that I can come back out and get back out there at some point in the season.”

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