Browns WR Amari Cooper Breaks Silence on Trade From Cowboys

Amari Cooper, Dallas Cowboys

Getty Wide receiver Amari Cooper #19 of the Dallas Cowboys walks off the field after the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on November 01, 2020 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles defeated the Cowboys 23-9. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

The Cleveland Browns made two potentially franchise-altering trades over an eight-day period back in mid-March. On Wednesday, one of the two players they acquired spoke for the first time since joining the franchise.

Wide receiver Amari Cooper conducted his first press conference on April 20, one day after the Browns opened voluntary offseason workouts. He spoke in depth about the move from the Dallas Cowboys to Cleveland after the trade was completed on March 12.

“I wouldn’t say I wanted to leave. But at the same time, it’s never personal. It’s just business, and that’s part of the business of being in this league,” Cooper told reporters. “Things like that happen all the time — players get cut, players get traded.”

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Browns Got Major Value in Acquisition of Amari Cooper

Amari Cooper

GettyWide receiver Amari Cooper, formerly of the Dallas Cowboys, runs with the ball in the first quarter of a game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on January 8, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

In Cooper’s case, he was traded for the Browns’ fifth-round pick in the upcoming NFL Draft, as well as a swap of sixth-round picks between Cleveland and Dallas.

It appears now that the Browns all but stole the four-time Pro-Bowl wide receiver, especially considering the massive draft packages the Las Vegas Raiders gave up for Davante Adams and the Miami Dolphins surrendered for Tyreek Hill, respectively.

Cooper’s outlook on his trade was characterized by maturity and perspective, possibly helped by the fact that he was also traded once before — from the Raiders to the Cowboys at the 2018 mid-season deadline in exchange for a first-round pick.

There’s no player in the league who’s still in the league from 30 years ago. It all comes to an end at some point. With that said, I am excited about this new chapter, and I embrace it. I look forward to the future here.

It’s not like back in the day. I had a coach when I was in Oakland who played wide receiver for 10 years, Rob Moore. He got traded. He didn’t even know about it because there was no social media, so guys were interviewing him and asking him questions and that’s how he found out. But it’s always something looming when you’re about to get traded or something like that, so you kind of know. So I wasn’t really surprised at all.

Cooper Happy About Browns Trade For QB Deshaun Watson

Amari Cooper Cowboys

GettyWide receiver Amari Cooper, formerly of the Dallas Cowboys, on the field before a game against the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium on October 10, 2021 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images)

Aside from his own trade, Cooper addressed the Browns’ acquisition of former Houston Texans QB Deshaun Watson — a deal that went down on March 20, just eight days after Cooper was informed he was headed to Cleveland.

“I was elated,” Cooper told the media Wednesday. “It was cool. I was happy about it.”

The acquisition of Watson means that Baker Mayfield is likely on his way out of Cleveland. Currently, the Carolina Panthers and the Seattle Seahawks are the most likely trade partners for Mayfield, with the Pittsburgh Steelers interested in signing the spurned signal caller should the Browns decide to release him outright.

Cooper didn’t speak to the drama under center in Cleveland, choosing instead to keep his comments focused on a new future with Watson.

He’s a great player. I’m a great player. We’re going to make it work by any means necessary.

But as far as being his No. 1 receiver, that has to be earned. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done in the past. It has to be earned every day in OTAs, minicamp, training camp.

So I’m looking forward to going out there and earning the respect of [Watson] and allow him to say, ‘I want to go to this guy. I’m confident in this guy.

I know he’s going to come through for me, so I just have to go out there and prove it.

I understand that that’s the reason I’m here, to help the passing game improve. And I take that on. I feel it’s my responsibility to do that, and it’s no worry. I know what I can do.

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