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      Wednesday, March 18 2015 11:05 AM EDT2015-03-18 15:05:08 GMT
      Trinity Spine Center uses Stem Cells for Back Pain.Stem cells are master cells of the body that are available for repairing damaged tissues and organs including spine discs and cartilage cushions in the joints.
      Trinity Spine Center uses Stem Cells for Back Pain.Stem cells are master cells of the body that are available for repairing damaged tissues and organs including spine discs and cartilage cushions in the joints.
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    Breakout time for Cobb
    Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - One of the running jokes on Arrested Development (I say one because there's a million of them) is that Michael Bluth can never remember the name of his son's girlfriend.

    Her name's Ann but Michael still hasn't figured that out yet.

    "George Michael, listen. Why don't you and Plant just wait in the stair car. I'm just gonna finish up here with GOB."

    "I'm sure Egg is a very nice person."

    "Make an appearance? No, no, it's okay. You be with Yam. It's fine."

    "Annhog's coming? I mean I thought it would just be the two of us. Alright, just load her up in the car."

    Packers wideout Randall Cobb can relate. He's been given the Ann treatment by fantasy owners for years.

    Cobb was virtually ignored on draft day a season ago and for good reason. He was fourth on a receiving depth chart that already included Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson and James Jones. Plus, the Packers were equipped with one of the top receiving tight ends in the league in Jermichael Finley.

    All Cobb did in 2012 was put up more yards than any of them. The 80 catches Cobb reeled in were the most by a Green Bay receiver since 2008.

    If Cobb hadn't sat out the regular season finale versus Minnesota, he probably would have reached 1,000 yards receiving for the first time in his career. Instead he settled for 954 yards and eight touchdowns, good for 18th-best among fantasy wide receivers.

    Because of Cobb's slot tendencies and his short stature (he's only 5-foot-10), one might call him a poor man's Wes Welker. Personally, I think he's a rich man's Welker.

    Sure Welker dwarfed Cobb in yardage (1,354) and receptions (118) last season but who made the most trips to the end zone? Cobb won that battle by an eight to six margin. In ESPN leagues, their point per game averages were almost identical (10.25 per game for Welker, 10.0 for Cobb).

    That's an incredible bargain when you think about it. Welker came off the board in the second round in most leagues last season. Meanwhile, Cobb was still roaming the waiver wire for most of the first month. Fantasy owners finally started scooping him up around October and by the end of the season, Cobb was owned in almost 97 percent of leagues.

    That won't happen again this year. ESPN already has him ranked as the 11th- best wide receiver in the draft (two spots ahead of Welker, if you're keeping score). Part of that has to do with the departure of Jennings, who inked a five-year deal with Minnesota in the offseason. That's one less player Cobb has to battle for targets.

    For those of you who work better with Seinfeld metaphors, Cobb is following a similar career trajectory to David Puddy. Last year, Cobb was the mechanic who fixed the Packers' offensive engine when it stalled early in the season. Now he's in the showroom selling Saabs to customers.

    So, Cobb has finally shed the grease monkey label ("I don't know too many monkeys who could take apart a fuel injector"). But is he really top-ten material?

    I don't see why not. Yes, Cobb benefited from Nelson's injury struggles last season but who's to say that Nelson won't get hurt again? And why does Nelson's ceiling have to be as high as Cobb's? Aside from a breakout 2011 campaign when he hauled in 1,263 yards, Nelson has only averaged 503.3 yards per season.

    And remember who's throwing to him. Mr. Discount Double Check was far and away the best quarterback in the NFL last year and there's no reason to think he won't be again in 2013. The 108.0 QB rating Aaron Rodgers posted a season ago wasn't just the best in the league. It was the 14th best of all-time.

    The Rodgers/Cobb duo was sensational last season. Rodgers completed 76.9 percent of his throws to Cobb in 2012 and it would have been even higher if Cobb hadn't dropped nine of them (85.6 percent). Just to emphasize how remarkable that number is, here are the success rates of some of the other top quarterback/receiver combos from last season:

    Matt Schaub to Andre Johnson: 112-for-164 (68.3 percent)

    Peyton Manning to Demaryius Thomas: 94-for-141 (66.7 percent)

    Jay Cutler to Brandon Marshall: 118-for-194 (60.8 percent)

    Matthew Stafford to Calvin Johnson: 122-for-205 (59.5 percent)

    We know Rodgers will have no trouble delivering the ball to Cobb next season. What we don't know is how he's planning to use James Jones.

    The 29-year-old was a red zone machine last season, finishing the year with a league-best 14 touchdown receptions. Considering Jones had never snagged more than seven touchdowns in a season before 2012, it's realistic to expect a drop-off. That could mean more touchdowns for Cobb next season.

    Here's another thing people are forgetting. Cobb is only 22. He made huge strides last season and he should make progress again in 2013. The Packers have already said they're thinking about relieving Cobb of some of his special teams duties (he returned 38 kicks and 31 punts a season ago) so he can focus on catching passes.

    It's time for everyone to learn Cobb's name. If you don't know who Cobb is now, you definitely will when he's beating your fantasy team in a few months.




    Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Jesse Pantuosco at jpantuosco@sportsnetwork.com.

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    Welcome to Great38 Tampa Bay WTTA-TV/DT - WFLA News Channel 8

    Welcome to Great38 Tampa Bay WTTA-TV/DT - WFLA News Channel 8

      Watch & Win: Ticket to the Tampa Bay Rowdies

      Updated:

      Score a family four-pack of tickets to see the Tampa Bay Rowdies!Watch back-to-back episodes of Family Feud from 6:30-7:30 p.m. between May 6-19.Watch for the announcement and be the 8th caller to win Rowdies tickets. It's time to watch and win with Great 38!Great 38  More>>

      • Great Stuff

      Exclusive look inside newly renovated Al Lang Stadium Video included

      Updated:

      Great 38 News Now got an exclusive look at the newly renovated Al Lang Stadium while it was still under construction. More>>

      PARC prepares for 41st Annual Golf Tournament Video included

      PARC prepares for 41st Annual Golf Tournament PARC prepares for 41st Annual Golf Tournament
      Updated:

      PARC is a local non-profit organization whose goal is to turn disabilities into capabilities. They provide opportunities for children and adults with developmental disabilities to exercise their independence and experience life to the fullest.  More>>

      Out and About
      • Great StuffMore>>

      • Drier air and fewer storms in Tampa Bay

        Drier air and fewer storms in Tampa Bay

        Wednesday, May 27 2015 3:46 AM EDT2015-05-27 07:46:07 GMT
        Fewer storms will develop this afternoon as drier air arrives in the Tampa Bay area. There's just a 20% chance of a late-day shower near the coast.
        Fewer storms will develop this afternoon as drier air arrives in the Tampa Bay area. There's just a 20% chance of a late-day shower near the coast.
      • Heath Matters: Trinity Spine Center

        Heath Matters: Trinity Spine Center

        Wednesday, March 18 2015 11:05 AM EDT2015-03-18 15:05:08 GMT
        Trinity Spine Center uses Stem Cells for Back Pain.Stem cells are master cells of the body that are available for repairing damaged tissues and organs including spine discs and cartilage cushions in the joints.
        Trinity Spine Center uses Stem Cells for Back Pain.Stem cells are master cells of the body that are available for repairing damaged tissues and organs including spine discs and cartilage cushions in the joints.
      Powered by WorldNow

      200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

      Telephone: 813.228.8888
      Fax: 813.225.2770
      Email: news@wfla.com

      Can???t find something?
      Powered by WorldNow
      All content © Copyright 2000 - 2015 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.