Report: Cowboys are likely to release Amari Cooper

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Earlier this week, Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said it was “too early” to address receiver Amari Cooper‘s status with the team for 2022.

It’s not too early any longer.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Dallas is likely to release Cooper by the start of the new league year.

Cooper is due to make $20 million in base salary that becomes fully guaranteed on March 20. Releasing him would save the Cowboys $16 million in cap space.

But just because Dallas is likely to release Cooper doesn’t mean that will be the ultimate result. A receiver-needy team with significant cap space could swoop in and trade for him.

Though he was the league’s highest-paid receiver in 2021, Cooper was not even the leading receiver on his own team. He finished the regular season tied for 39th in receptions (68), 34th in receiving yards (865), and tied for 37th in points among non-kickers with eight touchdowns.

The fourth overall pick of the 2015 draft, Cooper has caught 292 passes for 3,893 yards with 27 touchdowns since being traded to the Cowboys from the Raiders midway through the 2018 season.

Without Cooper, Dallas will have CeeDee Lamb and several question marks at receiver entering the new league year. Notably, Michael Gallup and Cedric Wilson are both set to become unrestricted free agents, as is tight end Dalton Schultz.

But according to Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports, part of the plan is for the Cowboys to secure a long-term deal with Gallup.

48 responses to “Report: Cowboys are likely to release Amari Cooper

  1. Cooper is a nice receiver, but should not be paid anywhere near the top 10 at his position…he’s not a franchise changing type player…nowhere close to guys like Adams, Hopkins, Chase, Evans, and so on…he’s in the bottom half of #1s around the league. Would be nice to have him on my team but much closer to $10M/yr than $20M/yr.

  2. Raider fans feel your pain. Great athlete who can make big plays but entirely unreliable.

  3. Finally a sign of intelligent life in the Dallas organization. This guy is overrated and WAY overpaid. He isn’t half the player Lamb is

  4. Nice! So genius Jerruh gave-up a first rounder for two and a half years of forgettable underperformance by Coop. Cowboys players won’t miss him, because he typically disappeared for games at a time since arriving there.

  5. Probably want to come to the City OF Angels in a prove it deal and show what he can do in A Sean McVay offense while picking up a ring. Another future Ram who likes to hang out in this great city in the off season

  6. Stupid. Cooper is easily their best receiver. He wasn’t the problem, Dak got scared the second half of the season and stopped throwing deep. The only time he would let it go was when defense jumped off sides and he had a free play. Most of the time those would be good for long gain’s.

  7. Dallas couldn’t motivate him. He’s got the money. I think Cooper is selfish as a receiver and wants the number of targets he gets to increase. He wants (rightly or wrongly) to be 2007 Randy Moss. Chargers or some team with a good young QB should go get Cooper and then throw the ball to Cooper a ridiculous number of times. My bet is his catch percentage will actually go up. Looking at pro football reference, his stats seem to back up this not-so-fresh take.

  8. Dumb teams do dumb things… this would be dumb for them, but the original deal was dumb too…

  9. I like Cooper’s route running but it’s time to move on and reduce the cap hit.

  10. he wont be the only one. plenty of other over price Vets all over the NFL will be invited to leave as the new season is just around the corner.

  11. Cowboys management (ownership) never seems to be able to get value for their players. Overpay, cut, and repeat with the next guy in line. Doesn’t even matter that they’ve been drafting well for a while now because they have no idea how or when to do a contract. The Jones’ have destroyed a historic franchise.

  12. Cooper is a good receiver but he has not really stepped up like one would expect of somebody making the amount of money that he makes. When the offense is working, he contributes but he does not really lift up the offense when things are not working.

  13. They really messed that up. They committed a first-round pick on him, so therefore they had to commit a big contract on him, so therefore the contract becomes too big and they have to cut him.

    Seeing this first-hand too many times, fans need to learn that sometimes you just let free agents walk. Overpaying for any player is for bad teams to do, and any player could be overpaid.

  14. Guy just has never put it all together. His hands were always suspect and he’s added durability issues to go with that since he got to the league. He looked like he’d be Julio Jones Jr. or something the first half of his rookie year.

  15. Smart move for the Cowboys to dump Cooper and free up the cap space. They already have an up-and-coming WR1 in Lamb so they really need another reliable option more so than to tie up their cap flexibility. Gallup or Christian Kirk would both be great WR2 options and can be had for a fraction of Cooper’s $20m/yr. Lamb and a reliable WR2 would allow the Cowboys to keep more of their playoff caliber team intact.

  16. Cooper is a very good number 3 receiver. When he was with the Raiders for 3 1/2 years he never lead in receptions or TDs (he was either 2nd or 3rd). He’s matured with the Cowboys to lead them, but then slipped this past year to be the 2nd or 3rd option. Look at him as a good number 2.

  17. Send Elliot along with him. Take the salary cap hit whatever it might be and move on from Elliot. Promote Pollard to starter.

  18. I like Cooper, but, I like the idea of having that money to spread around a little bit more…

  19. The only championship Dallas will win the Jones’ running the show, will be the annual “Media-Darlings” award. Every year they get hyped up, and ultimately fail miserably. They’re a .500 team, at best, against teams that aren’t awful.

  20. Dak was definitely the problem this year but those 2 games cooper missed due to covid protocols weren’t the brightest.

  21. Trade him for multiple #1s … because we all know that teams are dying to get players off that talented roster.

  22. Putting all the Dallas hate that they receive to the side for a minute.

    I always feel like the team has no identity and just a recollection of random talent. If you’re going to be a spread it out high-powered offense then do that and let Zeke go. If you want to smash people in the face and run it down their throat, then build personnel and a system around that.

    Jerry just always seems to like to to collect shiny things and never worry about how the team meshes together.

  23. mrhawkeye293 says:
    March 4, 2022 at 11:20 am
    Stupid. Cooper is easily their best receiver. He wasn’t the problem, Dak got scared the second half of the season and stopped throwing deep. The only time he would let it go was when defense jumped off sides and he had a free play. Most of the time those would be good for long gain’s.
    The Dallas Cowboys offense was not the same the second half of the season compared to the first half. Neither Cooper or Lamb had a 100 yard game after week 8. Didn’t throw deep? Is that why Lamb still averaged more yards per catch? Did I mention that Lamb was also doing kick-off returns? Do you really think that Cooper only has one route, deep? Get real.

  24. 3 years ago with the division on the line vs Phi he pulled himself out in crunch time and that speaks volumes on where he’s at as a team player

  25. The Cowboys are in caphell. Dak’s contract is going to gut the roster. Next victim is Zeke.

  26. Wait, so Raiders/Gruden weren’t dumb for trading Cooper instead of signing him to huge money?? (also Mack has not been even close to worth the money either) Both have largely been above average players, but not even close to the money they wanted/got…

    Now, what the Raiders DID with those picks is entirely another story lol

  27. Cooper isn’t as overrated as Dak is. What is a receiver to do when his qb won’t throw to him unless the corner fell down. Dak is a scared qb.

  28. This is an easy call given the salary cap decisions to be made. Plus he didn’t even have enough sense to get the COVID vaccine, so that tells you all you really need to know about him. Good luck.

  29. [My favorite team] should sign him on a cheap, incentive-laden, one-year prove-it deal.

  30. Cooper is the best receiver on the team, when healthy. Lamb is JuJu. He’s not a #1.

  31. Why would a receiver needy team want to give up a draft pick (like a 7th) and take on that contract for if at best a mid-league probably number 2 receiver, he isn’t worth it. Any team would be better of splitting that $20 million on 3 decent receivers then on one so so grossly over paid receiver. Raiders made the mistake of drafting him in the 1st round, but they found an inept owner to double down with little return on the field.

  32. I’ll still be betting on whoever plays Dallas in the playoffs, assuming they get there…

  33. WRs are a dime a dozen. The draft churns them out by the truck load. No need to pay someone that kind of money. Just keep your corp stocked with a 2nd or 3rd rounder and you will be just fine. Fans and Media love the position but it isn’t the difference maker people think it is. I hope my Packers don’t pay Adams $20M, it would be a mistake too.

  34. High dollar WRs are about to go through some things given that last year’s crop of draft picks came in and killed it and this year’s crop looking very strong. Why pay an older guy $20m when you can pay a younger guy $1m and get better returns. All the money is going to go to the QB.

  35. Cooper has $60M remaining on that contract over the next three years. I can’t imagine any team taking on that contract let alone giving Dallas anything of substance for the privilege of overpaying Cooper.

  36. Hes decent, not great, but that has to do with his attitude and motivation more than talent. Hes talented. He may show up in a game or he may not. Dallas paid him like he was going to want to show up and play in a lot of games, unfortunately he was not up for that.

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