Mike McCarthy: Packers WR Randall Cobb needs to 'keep being Randall'

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Randall Cobb wants to do more. His coaches just want him to keep doing what he’s doing.

It’s understandable that as the Green Bay Packers' offense continues to go through uncharacteristic struggles, their leading receiver would hold himself responsible.

“I feel like it’s my fault,” Cobb said. “I feel like it’s on me. I’ve got to make more plays when I get opportunities.”

If anything, his coaches viewed Cobb’s comments this week as a sign of leadership and maturity.

“He pours his heart and soul in the game of football,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “He's that type of teammate, also. I'm not looking for guys to come out of themselves and try to be something else. Randall just needs to keep being Randall. The best thing about Randall, he feels good, he's healthy. Frankly, I thought he played pretty good in the Denver game. He's like the rest of our prime-time players, he just needs more opportunities.”

At age 25, Cobb has taken over as the voice and face of the Packers’ receiver group.

“Randall’s young in age but not in experience and leadership abilities,” said Alex Van Pelt, who coaches the quarterbacks and receivers. “He’s definitely, now with Jordy’s injury, he’s the leader of the group. He sets the example every day in the room and on the field at practice and on the field on game day. He’s done a tremendous job.”

Cobb was the Packers’ leading receiver in last Sunday’s loss at Denver with six catches, but he managed to shake free for only 27 yards (and a season-low average of just 4.5 yards per catch). Since his three-touchdown game in Week 3 against the Kansas City Chiefs, Cobb hasn’t found the end zone.

The loss of Jordy Nelson to his preseason knee injury has meant more defensive attention on Cobb, and perhaps that’s one of the reasons it has been more difficult for him and the other receivers to get open.

Cobb likely will see the Carolina Panthers’ top cornerback, Josh Norman, plus double teams on Sunday.

When asked how much tougher it’s been for him without Nelson, Cobb paused for several seconds before he said: “I don’t know what you want from me. I don’t know what you want to hear. I’m going to go out and I’m going to play better for this team. I’m going to do more. I’m going to be the best Randall I can be.”

McCarthy clearly sensed Cobb’s frustration this week.

“Cobb’s a warrior,” McCarthy said. “He’s a winner. He wants to win. He’s an extremely passionate young man. He goes about everything the right way. I think you’re just seeing an expression of his passion to win. No one felt good about what happened last week. No one likes to talk about it, regardless of the outcome the prior week, past Wednesday. I think you’re seeing our team is focused on Carolina.”