Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Kentucky's Cobb gets 'Mr. Versatility' award
By ESPN.com staff
Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low
I had a question from a reader earlier this week about who was the most versatile player in the league.
That’s a hard one, too, because there are some guys who could be more versatile if their teams allowed them to branch out and do other things. I’m talking about Florida’s Joe Haden, Tennessee’s Eric Berry and Georgia’s A.J. Green. They’re just too valuable in their current roles to move them around too much.
So that said, five guys come to mind.
In alphabetical order, my finalists for the "Mr. Versatility" award this season in the SEC would be Alabama’s Javier Arenas, Kentucky’s Randall Cobb, Alabama’s Mark Ingram, Ole Miss’ Dexter McCluster and South Carolina’s Eric Norwood.
Norwood is the only non-skill player I mentioned simply because he’s made an impact in so many different areas. He leads the SEC in sacks. He’s returned an interception for a touchdown. He’s blocked three kicks, and he’s lined up as both an outside linebacker and end.
Arenas is having a terrific season at cornerback and leads all SEC defensive backs in tackles. Teams aren’t kicking to him as much, but he’s still one of the most dangerous return men out there. McCluster is the most explosive running/receiving threat in the league, and Ingram is on track to rush for 1,400 yards and catch 30 passes. You can count on one hand how many times that’s happened in the SEC.
But my vote goes to Cobb, who leads the SEC in touchdowns per game with 10. He’s scored five rushing, four receiving and has also returned a punt for a touchdown. He’s third in the SEC in all-purpose yards and is the only player in the league that has more than 200 yards in four different categories -- rushing, receiving, punt returns and kickoff returns. He’s also a former high school quarterback and has thrown seven passes this season, including a 37-yard completion.
In a league full of guys gifted enough and skilled enough to play several different roles, Cobb is the best of the bunch.