Either I'm dreaming, or the Dallas Cowboys made ANOTHER move this offseason that signals they want to win this upcoming season. I will go both since I live the dream every day — but that's another story.
After making a move to acquire Cornerback Stephon Gilmore to shore their CB depth and re-signing two key defenders, the Cowboys made another move Sunday morning to improve another personnel group.
According to Cowboys reporter Michael Gehlken, the team traded a 2023 fifth-round pick and a 2024 sixth-round pick to the Houston Texans for Wide receiver Brandin Cooks.
For me, this trade comes as a surprise because of two things.
- The only wideouts insiders have mentioned this offseason that the Cowboys may pursue have been WR Deandre Hopkins and Odell Beckham Jr.
- Based on history, the team never trades in any off-season. It's always flirting with the idea — but no action.
But it looks like those two things can be laid to rest now since Cooks is now in the fold for the Cowboys for two seasons, as they will pay him $12.5M in 2023 and $16.5M in 2024.
To complete the Brandin Cooks trade, Texans agreed to pay $6M of his $18M salary in 2023, a person familiar with situation said. So Cowboys acquire Cooks for two Day 3 picks and save one third of his salary. @AaronWilson_NFL first reported the financial element to deal.
Based on reports of $6M retained, WR Brandin Cooks should bring cap hits of:
2023: $12.35M ($12M GTD)
2024: $16.5M ($0 GTD)
to the #Cowboys, leaving behind $22.2M with the #Texans ($4M saved). It's his 4th trade in 6 seasons.https://t.co/hUUecut2RO
This move now allows the team to enter this year's draft without having to target a wide receiver early. Additionally, it means the team won't have to rely on a rookie wideout to make an impact early on, and they can focus on other positions.
But expect the team still target someone in the later rounds because you need to prepare for the future.
Expect Cooks to slide into the WR2 role and be a guy who can take the top off for the Cowboys. Although he is an older player (in NFL years), he still garners respect around the league from opposing defenses.
If you peek at his resume, you find that Cooks has only failed to reach 1,000-plus yards in three seasons during his nine-year career. While one of those seasons was last season, fans shouldn't be worried since he was on a horrible Texans team.
And they had a revolving door at QB and were just a flat-out mess, so I can understand why Cooks likely wanted to book it out there.
But the most ironic and comical thing for me is that his down-year in receiving last season (699 yards) would have been second behind wideout CeeDee Lamb if he were on the team last season.
So, imagine if Cooks can reach 1,000 yards again? We may be talking about another pair of 1,000 WRs next season — which is always great.
Nonetheless, I'm going to prematurely jump the gun and label this trade as one of the best we have seen this NFL off-season.
You're getting an experienced wideout for the price of two late-round picks for players you likely didn't see hit the field this upcoming season. And if I may add, it feels nice to see the team being aggressive in team-building.
Now am I ready to say, “It's our year?” Nope, not yet. Some other moves need to be made still in other personnel groups, but I'm happy that I won't have to watch Quarterback Dak Prescott force-feed Lamb anymore.
With Cooks, Lamb, and Michael Gallup — you can argue that's a solid trio. Especially if Gallup returns to form, then we're talking business.
Welcome to Jerry World, Brandin. Now please go “cook” some defensive backs for us.