Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb were inarguably the most elite wide receiver duo in football this year, combining for 189 catches for 2,806 yards and 25 touchdowns.
That duo will be targeted early and often this Sunday in Green Bay’s playoff game against Dallas. The only question is, do the Cowboys have the defense to slow them down?
“Well, they don’t have the type of defense to stop the Packers. Slow down? (It’s) possible,” NFL Network analyst Nate Burleson said on The Doug Gottlieb Show. “Starting with (Orlando) Scandrick. He’s very competitive, very feisty. He’s the type of individual that will try to impose his will on receivers. Now let’s be honest here. Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb are one of the best duos in the NFL. If you’re stopping one, you’re essentially freeing up another. Now, they don’t have a duo at the cornerback position that can go tit for tat with these two young wide receivers, but they can do that. They do have a formula. They’re very competitive, sound defense. And in the playoffs, you basically got to buy in or you’re not in. And right now, the Dallas Cowboys defense – (which) a lot of people said was a no-name group of guys – have bought into the system and they’ve been playing very well.
“So I think that Scandrick is going to be a guy that moves around quite a bit. Maybe not following Jordy Nelson, but in certain situations, certain scenarios, he’s going to find himself on the guy who’s supposed to get the ball.”
Burleson, believe it or not, is actually picking the Cowboys, who enter the game as 5.5-point underdogs.
“I tip the advantage to the Dallas Cowboys,” Burleson said. “The one thing I can respect and appreciate about the Dallas Cowboys this year is that they stuck to the script. They have not wavered in what they do. Playing with Scott Linehan in 2003 when I got drafted by the Minnesota Vikings and also returning back under his coaching when I was with the Detroit Lions, one thing he is adamant about: If we’re really good at something as an offense, we will impose that on somebody else. We don’t adjust going into games trying to do too much of what we think they’re weak at or trying to adjust because they’re strong at something else.
“They know as an offense that they’re good at running the ball, but they’re good at running the ball because they have such powerful skill players. And I say powerful because I mean in every sense of the word you have Dez Bryant, who had an unbelievable year and is as clutch as it gets. You’ve got Jason Witten, who is the most dependable soon-to-be Hall of Fame tight end and then you have Terrance Williams who makes splash plays. Not only splash plays, but without him last week, they don’t win the game. So they have a complement of guys that can really be a tag team to that running game.”