The Cowboys have been needing a receiver all season long and on Monday they made the move to go out and bolster what’s a pretty weak receiving core by trading this years first-round pick to the Oakland Raiders in exchange for Amari Cooper.
There’s been a lot of questioning about the direction that Jon Gruden is taking the Raiders in after the trading of Khalil Mack and then the way they have played this season, but I actually really liked this trade for Oakland.
Cooper is someone that I feel like the talent that he has just frankly hasn’t matched his production. That hasn’t always been the case as he did put up 1,000+ yard seasons in each of his first two seasons in the league, but last season was a down year and this season he hasn’t been off to the hottest start.
Another reason I don’t love Cooper is that his catch % is not what you’d like to see from a receiver you are going to rely on. Now this season his catch % is up to 68.8, which is by far a career-high for him, but he’s also averaging about 1.5 yards less per catch than his career average.
I don’t dislike Amari Cooper as a player, especially with the need the Cowboys had on the outside, but what I don’t like is giving up a first-round pick for him. The fact of the matter is that Amari Cooper should be a number two option at receiver and for the Cowboys to give up a first-round pick for him and not for Earl Thomas earlier this year is a head-scratcher to me. I know Earl Thomas got hurt, but before that he was showing that he had plenty left in the tank and could really help out a team like the Cowboys. Financially this isn’t a bad player to take on for the Cowboys, I just really dislike giving up a first-round pick for him.
For Oakland I love this trade. I didn’t like giving up Khalil Mack even though they got two first-round picks, but frankly I didn’t think there was any way they would be able to get a first-round pick out of anyone for Cooper, but they were obviously able to do that and that was huge because now they will have three first-round picks in this upcoming draft: their own, the Bears and now the Cowboys.
Odds are they won’t nail it on all of those picks, but giving themselves three chances to nail all of or two or their first-round picks is really smart when you are in a re-build and it really helps speed up the process.