Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones slammed new Cleveland Browns receiver, Amari Cooper.
The Cleveland Browns acquired former Pro Bowl receiver Amari Cooper for next to nothing from the Dallas Cowboys in the offseason. Cooper, a former Pro Bowl receiver, was had for a single, late-round draft pick. Fans of the Browns rejoiced, thinking they just landed a legitimate number one receiver.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has seemingly been happy to be rid of Cooper, bringing up some questions.
This concerns me because at the time it can be said the Cowboys just gave him up. Yes, it was a “salary dump” to a degree, but the Cowboys could’ve made any number of moves to get under the cap. They choose to give away Cooper for next to nothing. At the time, it didn’t seem that bad, but then we saw what Tyreke Hill and Devante Adams went for.
Hill went for a first second and fourth-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, plus a fourth and sixth-round pick in 2023. Adams went for a first and second-round pick in 2022. DeAndre Hopkins went for a fourth-round pick in a trade that was bemoaned for being as bad as it was. Heck, the Texans gave a second-round up for Brandin Cooks.
Yes, I’m aware that Cooper’s contract is terrible, but the Browns literally renegotiated it when he arrived, so it wasn’t like Cooper wasn’t willing to budge.
There is a concern here that Cooper isn’t the player he’s being paid to be and that was something Jones brought up in a recent press conference.
Jones told reporters that Cooper, Randy Gregory, and La’el Collins were guys who basically weren’t living up to their contracts. With the Cowboys owner going on to say (via Heavy.com)
"We lost three really high-profile players. Those players were in the top 10 of players who make the most money. …What I’m trying to say is those decisions were made more about availability than ability. They were made as how you arrived at not being available at times… But more important than anything is these decisions that we made, I made, relative to top players not being here had everything to do with their availability and my concern about their availability. For instance, you could have the exact same player, and if you were paying him one thing, about 10-15% of what you’re looking at paying him, then you can do that all day long. And you can have half-ass availability, when you’re paying him 10-15%. The day you’re called upon to raise that up about 10 times, then all of a sudden you start questioning whether or not availability should be more than the next."
Jerry Jones has a valid point even if you want to discredit him
Listen, Jerry Jones is a bad owner in the NFL. So if you want to dunk on him for being a bad manager of talent, sure. That’s fine. But if you think the Cleveland Browns are run by competent owners, then boy, welcome to the club because I have news for you. Andrew Berry is clearly a puppet for the Haslams, so there’s no real way to say for sure if Berry made the move to go get Cooper if it was Jimmy Haslam.
Plus, even if Berry was the one behind the call, let’s just say one name; Malik McDowell. I don’t need a second name (though I have more) to point out that Berry isn’t perfect and often swings and misses.
So no, I won’t blindly put my faith in Berry. I have concerns about Cooper and Jones’ comments ring true to my concerns.
Cooper production at $ 5 million a year would be a huge addition to the team. Cooper is making $20 million and his stats have declined over the last two years. It got so bad that once CeeDee Lamb appeared on the scene, Dak Prescott started targetting him significantly more than Cooper.
Not only that but Cooper was targeted the same number of times as Dan Schultz, the team’s tight end, and Schultz had more receptions.
He was the third option in Dallas, is being paid $20 million and Browns fans don’t have concerns? I don’t want to believe Jones is right but I’m not ignoring my own eyes and intuitions either. I think Cooper will play fine for a $5 million a year player, but I don’t have faith in him as a $20 million guy.