The Green Bay Packers are bound for Atlanta to face off against the Falcons in the NFC Title game, and Jared Cook’s catch is a major reason why…
The irony of the NFL never ceases to amaze me. In a classic battle on Sunday afternoon featuring the Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys, we saw something from tight end Jared Cook that most people would have deemed impossible at the start of the season:
An incredible catch.
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Cook, who has long been known for his excellent athletic ability as a tight end, has also struggled with a long history of dropped passes. So much so, that the Los Angeles Rams parted ways with the veteran, allowing the Green Bay Packers to sign him to a modest contract. It was a move that many thought shrewd of Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy, for as much as Cook has been known for dropping the ball, he’s also a height/weight/speed marvel who can create mismatches and problems for opposing defenses.
On a low-risk move, especially when potentially catching passes from Aaron Rodgers, it seemed like a great fit for both Cook and the Packers.
Throughout the season, however, Cook hasn’t been overly spectacular. Playing in just 10 games, he caught 30 passes for 377 yards and a touchdown. 105 of those yards came in a loss to the Washington Redskins, which was also the last game the Packers lost.
In Green Bay’s stunning victory over the Dallas Cowboys in the divisional round of the playoffs, he caught six passes on 11 targets for 104 yards and a touchdown, but no catch was more important than the one he made toward the end of the game. Here’s snapshot:
The concentration and footwork here by Cook is amazing. Obviously, the throw by Rodgers was equally incredible, but this was an all-time great postseason type of play and it was made by a guy who has a reputation for dropping balls. Cook was a major factor in this game as a receiver, especially due to the fact that Jordy Nelson is out with injury.
This is not a shot at Rams fans, because there’s no question Cook wouldn’t be in this position were he part of the Los Angeles roster. Sometimes, it takes a change of scenery and a legitimate quarterback throwing you passes to truly shine.
What a moment for Cook, and what a moment for the NFL as we move on to Championship week.