The Houston Texans signed Randall Cobb via free agency this past week, so how will he fit into the offense of Tim Kelley and Bill O’Brien?
Depth issues and questions surround the wide receivers of the Houston Texans, but after trading away the only All-Pro wide receiver they had in DeAndre Hopkins, the Texans added free agent Randall Cobb, who most recently played for the Dallas Cowboys this past season and with the Green Bay Packers from 2011-18.
In 2019, Cobb totaled 55 receptions for 828 yards and three touchdowns, including a 15.1 yards per reception average. While with the Cowboys in 2019, Cobb had back-to-back games in Week 10 and Week 11 where he had over 100 yards receiving in each of those games.
In Week 10 against the Minnesota Vikings, Cobb totaled 106 yards and one touchdown on six receptions, and the following week against the Detroit Lions, he had four receptions for 115 yards and one touchdown.
It is no secret that Cobb will playing in the slot for the Texans, as Will Fuller will move over to the No. 1 spot at wide receiver and opposite of him will be Kenny Stills. That trio — though not as powerful as one with Hopkins — is still capable of success if all three can stay on the field for the entire season, which is tough to achieve.
Now with that said, Cobb — who was graded at 69.9 by Pro Football Focus — was also targeted 79 times while with the Cowboys, tied for 49th in the NFL last season. Now just how will Cobb work with the system of the Texans in 2020?
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With the focus being on Fuller and how he has success as the top receiver for the first time in his career, that means Cobb could quietly have a solid ’20 season by being in the slot and most likely a target that Deshaun Watson will really rely on this season.
Last year Stills played most of his time at slot when Fuller was healthy and spent part of his time as the No. 2 receiver when Fuller was injured for a span of a few weeks. At other times, he was the designated slot receiver. In both of those roles, Stills finished with 40 receptions for 561 yards with four touchdowns.
Stills averaged 43.2 yards per game, 14 yards per reception and had two receptions of 40-plus yards as he was targeted 53 times last season in the dual wide receiver role, and overall he had a grade of 72.2 by Pro Football Focus.
Another player who is currently on the roster who might have an issue and even a competition battle for that spot is Keke Coutee, and where exactly does he fit in all of the plans of the Texans wide receivers in 2020?
It was evident Coutee was in the wrong side of O’Brien last season as he was a healthy scratch some games, was injured at times or was active and never saw the field, so he needs to be prepared for a big-time battle. That too will be interesting to see if we see the Coutee of his rookie season of 2018 or have a repeat of the 2019 season.
Again, though this trio isn’t near what a trio that includes Hopkins would be, don’t overlook what Cobb can bring to the Texans, but to do that none of the three wide receivers can be compared to what Hopkins would have brought.
Cobb still has some quality games left in the tank, as this will be his 10th season in the league. If the expectations aren’t too high or out of this world, Cobb will fit in nicely with the Houston Texans offense. Most likely, he’ll jump past Coutee on the depth chart at the position and will get plenty of playing time this season.