Amari Cooper remains on the physically unable to perform list after ankle surgery in January. But the Cowboys star receiver is close to returning, he said Tuesday.
“I wouldn’t say I’m quite 100 percent yet, to be completely candid, but I’m real close,” Cooper said, via Todd Archer of ESPN. “I can do everything, maybe a little better, just because I’ve been rehabbing so hard. Just trying to be the best Amari Cooper that I can be, trying to be better than I’ve ever been. I’ve been talking to myself a lot lately about how I want this year to be different than any other year that I’ve played football.”
Cooper played all 16 games last season, finishing with a career-high 92 catches for 1,114 yards and five touchdowns. He had bone spurs removed after the season and said he has not run a “real route” since the final game of last season.
“The thing about being injured is it reminds you about how much you love the game,” Cooper said. “You see guys who get injured, and they realize they don’t want to work through this process anymore, and they retire. That’s happened a lot. It’s just shown me how much I want to be there. I miss it so much. I never wanted to run a route so bad. And, so, in that thought process, you just grind to get back healthy, and just try to be the best you can be.”
Cooper has 224 receptions for 3,028 yards and 19 touchdowns in 41 games with the Cowboys, almost the same stats he had in 52 games with the Raiders. He has two Pro Bowls with each team.