Amari Cooper’s name keeps popping up in trade rumors involving the Dallas Cowboys. The latest report comes from ESPN’s Adam Schefter who noted the Cowboys have been one of the main teams to call the Raiders about Cooper’s availability.
Shefter reported the Cowboys are doing their “due diligence” on Cooper as they explore a potential trade. Schefter noted the Raiders asking price is a first round pick, a price tag that it is unclear whether the Cowboys are willing to pay.
Even though the Oakland Raiders have been adamant to teams that they want a first-round draft pick in exchange for Amari Cooper, one team that has done an inordinate amount of due diligence on him in recent days is the receiver-needy Dallas Cowboys, league sources tell ESPN.
The Cowboys have been calling around to people who know the 24-year-old Cooper, gathering as much information as they can about him as they mull whether to make a move for the former first-round draft selection, according to sources.
ESPN reported the Colts and Redskins are other likely candidates to trade for Cooper before the deadline. Earlier this week, Raiders head coach Jon Gruden denied that the team is looking to trade Cooper.
“I don’t know. No, I haven’t heard that,” Gruden told The Mercury News. “I’m not. I’m not. I just hope he’s OK.”
Cooper will enter the final year of his contract next season and is set to make $13.9 million in 2019. During a local radio interview, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones expressed skepticism over whether the Cowboys could make a deal that makes sense this late in the season.
“If you had an opportunity and it makes sense, that’s hard to do at this juncture, to bring in a position that needs the coordination that you have to have with the quarterback,” Jones said per Dallas News. “The farther you go into the year, then the harder it is to think about bringing a player in.”
The Cowboys offense has struggled to find their footing this season but had its best performance of the season in Week 6 against the Jaguars. Jones also expressed confidence in Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott.
“Because I’ve seen him do the things that give you long-term promise for a quarterback,” Jones said per Dallas News. “He’s extraordinarily diligent in his preparation. He carries preparation as good as anybody I’ve ever seen from the class room to the practice field. And then from the practice field to the game. That’s a huge ingredient when it comes to the quarterback. He needs to be able to, frankly, outwork everybody. And he does.”
A trade for Cooper would make a lot of sense for the Cowboys if they can get him for a fair price. Cooper has the upside to be a WR1, and the motivation to earn a big contract after next season.