Ones to Watch
In the National Football League there are some top quality receivers that don’t fit in with the big body stereotype. Wes Welker is a top receiver; no matter who you might compare him with, and Danny Amendola is a guy who is making his presence felt fairly early in his career. In this article we’ll look at a couple of smaller players that are showing potential for the future. These guys don’t have the numbers of Welker, or the proven talent of Amendola, but they are showing promise, and talent all of their own. They may fade away, but they’re showing up on many a co-ordinator’s radar.
Cobb has come to our attention mainly because of injuries to other players on the Green Bay Packers’ roster. Those injuries have given him the opportunity to shine, and he’s done just that. He came into the league in 2011 and really only featured heavily on special teams. Cobb scored a couple of touchdowns on special teams; one on a kick return, and one punt return. He also caught a touchdown. Granted the numbers are not astounding, but in his second season he has showed some of the talent that made him a second round pick in the NFL draft.
So far in 2012 Randall Cobb has proven to be a good target for Aaron Rogers. His consistently good production has also made his name pop up in many fantasy football conversations. His catch total is good and more importantly he has been getting into the end zone. Right now he’s not likely to be getting Pro Bowl votes, but if he keeps up his high level of play over the next season or two then there’s no reason why we won’t be seeing him in a Hawaiian shirt.
Dallas’ Cole Beasley is the archetypal small receiver. At 5’8” and 177lbs, you might be forgiven for thinking that he would be too small to play in the NFL, but as we’ve seen in this list you don’t need to be a 6’4” man mountain to succeed. Beasley doesn’t have the numbers to warrant any particular notoriety either, but again stats aren’t the only consideration when rating a player. This guy is one of those players that people just notice. He has clear potential as is evidenced by his play, and as an undrafted free agent he clearly has heart. There’s not much else to say about Beasley, as he hasn’t got a body of work to dissect. Perhaps a notable point is that he’s a born and bred Texas boy who played high school, and college ball in Texas before joining the Cowboys. That path alone should make his story a heart warming one, and one worthy of following. It’s early days for Cole Beasley, and he’ll either succeed or fail. He has potential; that’s for sure. Watch this space.
The small receivers that show toughness, courage, and consistent play when people are sceptical about their potential success are not a new thing. Over the years many smaller players have shown their critics to be wrong. Usually we associate that dogged success with running backs; Emmitt Smith being a perfect example, but many smaller receivers have also made the grade. One name that stands out is Wayne Chrebet. Wayne never had the super star numbers that some of his peers enjoyed, but the career long New York Jet was known throughout the league as a clutch performer. Mainly only heralded in New York; he won several awards, including a New York Newsday’s “Jet of the Year”, and more importantly a New York Jet Alumni “Jet of the Year”. During his most productive years it was all too common to see Chrebet going over the middle on that crucial third down, and picking up the yards that he needed. While Welker and company lap up the praise from an admiring public and a sometimes fickle media, give a little thought to players like Chrebet, and the other undersize receivers that paved the way before them.