This offseason, one of the biggest needs the Las Vegas Raiders have is at wide receiver. Hunter Renfrow is a great slot receiver but the team needs a true No. 1. New general manager Dave Ziegler played a factor in the New England Patriots spending money on Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne last offseason. It’s safe to assume that he’ll at least kick the tires on the Raiders’ options this offseason.
Davante Adams is the most common name linked to the team. He played college ball with Derek Carr at Fresno State and the two have stated a desire to play with each other again. Adams is arguably the best wide receiver in the NFL and he’ll want to be paid like it. There’s no doubt he’d be a massive addition to the Raiders’ offense and Carr could put up career-best numbers. However, Adams is looking for $30 million a year.
While he probably won’t get that much money, he’ll likely get no less than $25 million a year. Signing him would take up a huge portion of the Raiders’ cap space this offseason, which is an issue considering they have major needs on the offensive line and defensive backfield.
Regardless of how they do it, the Raiders need to find a No. 1 wide receiver. If they choose not to spend big on Adams, perhaps a trade could be explored.
One player who would be a perfect fit in Las Vegas is Houston Texans wide receiver Brandin Cooks. The Texans are in a rebuild so they don’t have the need for a 28-year-old wide receiver who is entering a contract year. The Raiders should offer a third-round pick for Cooks, which would be a great deal for the team. Perhaps bumping it up to a second-round pick would convince the Texans to make the deal.
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Cooks Is a Top-5 Deep Threat in the NFL
Cooks has been one of the most underrated wide receivers in the NFL for years now. In eight seasons, he has broken 1,000 yards in six of them. Adams was drafted the same year as Cooks and only has three seasons with over 1,000 yards. Obviously, Adams is the better wide receiver but Cooks shouldn’t be ignored as one of the best pass-catchers in the NFL.
What makes Cooks dynamic is his ability as a deep threat. He ran a 4.33 40-yard dash heading when he was coming out of college. Earlier in the 2021 season, NFL.com’s Nick Shook listed the top-10 deep threats in the league. Cooks came in at No. 3.
Cooks Played Under Josh McDaniels
Cooks make so much sense with the Raiders. Carr has shown in the past that he can build great rapport with speedy deep threats. Also, Cooks is very familiar with the new Raiders head coach. He spent the 2017 season with the New England Patriots when Josh McDaniels was the offensive coordinator. He had 65 catches for 1,082 yards that season.
He averaged a career-high 16.6 yards a reception under McDaniels before getting traded in the offseason. Cooks certainly isn’t cheap as he’s due $12.5 million next season but that’s at most half of what Adams will get paid in free agency.