On Monday afternoon, the Green Bay Packers finally confirmed what had been reported back on Saturday night - Randall Cobb is indeed back as a member of the Green and Gold, having signed a contract to play for the Packers for the next few years.
Cobb played a part in the announcement as well, sitting down with Packers.com's Mike Spofford to discuss his new contract, the team's 2014 season, and his plans and goals for the future. There's no question that Cobb is happy to be rejoining the team that drafted him in 2011, saying repeatedly that he was "excited" and referring to the free agency process as "a very stressful last couple of months."
As a player who was focused on both earning a new deal with his play and negotiating that contract off the field, Cobb certainly seems to have enjoyed the football aspect of the past season more than contract discussions. "The closer it got to free agency, the more stressful it got," Cobb said. "Just being able to find common ground and being able to make everything work out on the business side, I'm just excited to get back to football."
Reports before and after his signing on Saturday suggested that Cobb was willing to sign for less to stay in Green Bay than he might have received on the open market, and in fact multiple reports said that he was offered significantly more money by other teams.
And while the team's locker room atmosphere and friendships are big reasons for Cobb's return, he mentioned Aaron Rodgers and Jordy Nelson by name as fellow Packers with whom he is very close: "I know what I have in Aaron as a quarterback and as a friend, I know what I have in Jordy as a receiver and as a friend ... just being able to have those guys to lean on and being able to talk to them through different situations, it's been a blessing.
Don't think that Cobb thinks he has made it as far as his development or his ability as a receiver, though. As Cobb said, "My price may have changed a little bit, but at the end of the day I'm the same person. I'm going to go out there with the same intention to grow as a player."
There is ultimately one over-arching reason why Cobb is back in Green Bay, however, and that is the fact that he feels that the Packers offer him the best shot at winning a Super Bowl (or perhaps more than one). "I want championships," Cobb said. "At the end of the day, I want to win championships, and I feel like being in this offense and this organization was the best place for me to have the opportunity to win those championships. That's my goal day in and day out, to get those rings."
Here's to four more fantastic seasons, Randall, and here's hoping you put a couple of rings on in that time. Welcome back.