By LARRY VAUGHT
In four years with the Green Bay Packers, Randall Cobb has had 335 receptions for 4,214 yards and 33 touchdowns. Cobb also has a 108-yard kickoff return for the Packers.
The former University of Kentucky star signed a four-year, $40 million contract to stay with the Packers before the 2015 season. Yet you might be surprised to know that his mother, Tina Cobb, still thinks it was more exciting to watch him play when he was at UK than it is in the NBA.
“I always watch him play because you never know what might happen in a game,” Tina Cobb said. “But it was just more exciting when he was in college. I felt like in college, everybody’s heart was really in it. In the NFL, they are out to hurt each other. I just think about that all the time. I don’t want him to get hurt.
“In college, they have more sympathy for you than the NFL level. In college, they don’t want to really hurt you. It’s more intentional in the NFL than the college level. You can really get hurt in the NFL.”
She doesn’t go to many NFL games. For one reason, it’s easier to watch games on TV. But there’s also another major reason.
“It is hard to sit and listen to the critics (fans) and people talk about your son when things do not go your way and you are not able to defend your child. It’s just easier to watch on TV,” she said. “Everybody seems to be more worried about fantasy football than the person individually.”
She admits her son’s NFL success has been “unbelievable” and how her son dreamed of something like this happening.
“I remember when he was in college and I had moved to Kentucky briefly and we were out together. He said, ‘Mom, if I had the opportunity to go to the NFL before my senior year, would you be okay with that?’ I was like if that is what you want to do, fine. But in the back of mind I was not thinking that was going to happen because he was so little. But he had his mind made up. He left UK after his junior year and it worked out fine,” she said.
Part of the reason why is his relationship with Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers. The all-pro quarterback even came to Cobb’s recent graduation at UK.
“Aaron is unbelievable. Their relationship is more than on the field,” Tina Cobb said. “They do a lot of things together. They have gone on vacations together. They spend a lot of quality time together. They have a friendship and special bond.
“He is like a big brother to Randall and Randall is like a little brother to him. I watch them in games and on the sidelines and I can see Aaron tell him it is okay if he makes a mistake and is being too hard on himself.”
Still, even though Randall Cobb’s graduation was Kentucky Derby weekend, Tina Cobb never thought about Rodgers being a the Derby and then coming to Lexington for the graduation.
“I was so surprised when Randall said Aaron would be there. Trust me, I was not thinking it would be that Aaron,” she laughed and said.