David Cobb’s time in the NFL isn’t up yet. Released by the Titans during cuts, the 2015 fifth-round pick finally landed on his feet on Tuesday night, joining the Steelers as a member of the practice squad per Jeremy Fowler for ESPN.com.
Cobb’s rookie season couldn’t have gone much worse. The Minnesota product appeared in seven games and started one, carrying 52 times for 146 yards — an extremely disappoiting 2.8 average per attempt — and one touchdown. He also added just one reception for a loss of two yards.
There are plenty of knocks on Cobb, a one-dimensional, plodding power back. He lacks burst or much speed at all, clocking in at an almost lineman-like 4.81 seconds in the 40-yard dash, and offers nothing as a receiver out of the backfield.
On the other hand, Cobb is also 5-foot-11, 229 yards. At that size, he should have some value as a short-yardage or goal-line back who can fight for tough yards. And at only 23 years of age, there is room to develop in other areas. After all, Cobb was a highly successful back in college, twice eclipsing 1,000 yards rushing in a season — including 1,626 as a senior — at over 5.0 yards per rush.
It wouldn’t be a stretch to blame some of Cobb’s struggles on the Titans’ inability to run the football as a team. He did look a bit better in limited preseason action this year with the talent level on the team improving overall, carrying eight times for 28 yards and catching one pass for one yard.
Whatever the case, the Steelers felt he was worthy of a spot on the practice squad at least, and it’s hard to go wrong that way. Not sure how much of an impact he could ever have in the high-flying attack the team operates under Ben Roethlisberger, but if Pittsburgh ever goes back to a full-on power running approach, Cobb might be a future Hall of Fame back.