Cole Beasley and Dez Bryant are the last two players to hold the title of No. 1 wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys, but that's all changed now that they've acquired Amari Cooper via trade from the Oakland Raiders. With Cooper now on board, I thought it would be fun to compare him to his previous predecessors in order to get a better understanding of what he brings to the table.
Based on the eye test alone, Amari Cooper compares more favorably to Dez Bryant than he does Cole Beasley. Cooper looks much more like the prototypical No. 1 WR the Cowboys have deployed in the past, but looks can be deceiving.
Despite being about the same size as Dez Bryant (6'2" 220), Amari Cooper (6'1", 211) doesn't nearly play with the same kind of strength and physicality. Cooper isn't the type of WR who is going to out physical opposing defensive backs or win a lot of contested catches like Bryant did. That's just not his game and that's okay.
In his prime, Dez Bryant was a physically dominant WR who made up for his lack of route-running ability with physical toughness at the top of this routes and superhuman like ability to win those contested catch situations. He was a bully at the catch point because of his strong hands, timing, and leaping ability. But, don't expect to see much of that from Amari Cooper.
As much as I would like to see Amari Cooper bring to the Cowboys what Dez Bryant did during his prime, it's simply not going to happen. That's okay, because Cooper's skill set is better suited for Quarterback Dak Prescott and compares more favorably to his current favorite target, Cole Beasley.
If you were to take a close look at Cooper's game film you would notice that his skill set is much more comparable to Cole Beasley. In fact, if you disregard the difference in size and skin color, you have very similar players who can do a lot of the same things in the passing game.
Precision route-running is what makes Cole Beasley so great at what he does. He is essentially a mismatch against any defensive back who tries to cover him in a one-on-one situation and that's Amari Cooper's best trait as well. But, Cooper's speed adds yet another dimension to his route-running ability and enables him to be a threat all over the field.
For wide receivers, mastering route-running is the most important trait to learn. Route-running is a combination of speed, physicality, timing, quickness, precision, awareness, and savviness. When a WRs physical tools begin to break down, falling back on their route-running skills is what can keep them in the game. If they don't have that trait developed, their career usually ends up circling the drain like Dez Bryant's.
Luckily, Amari Cooper is a magician of a route-runner. Like Beasley, he is nearly impossible to cover in a one-on-one situation. He is an expert at identifying coverages, manipulating space, and reading the leverage of opposing defensive backs. He is exactly what Dak Prescott needs in a No. 1 wide receiver.
Despite looking more like Dez Bryant physically, Amari Cooper plays like a bigger version of Cole Beasley on the field and that should excite all of Cowboys Nation and Dak Prescott.
Do you like the fact Amari Cooper is more like Beasley then Bryant?
Cowboys en Español: La Afortunada Llegada de Randall Cobb
Tras la partida del veterano Cole Beasley, los Dallas Cowboys tenían un hueco preocupante en la posición de receptor abierto. Incluso después de obtener a Amari Cooper la temporada pasada y el tener a un jugador joven y talentoso en Michael Gallup, el equipo tenía que hacer algo para reemplazar a Beasley como el receptor de slot en la ofensiva. Beasley fue increíble en su trabajo durante su carrera en Dallas, pero la administración nunca estuvo cerca de igualar las ofertas que recibió de los Buffalo Bills. Afortunadamente, ya encontraron el hombre para el trabajo.
A pesar de estar muy callados en la primera semana de agencia libre, los Cowboys empiezan a verse involucrados con varios jugadores disponibles. Su contratación más importante hasta el momento es sin duda la del ex WR de los Green Bay Packers, Randall Cobb.
Hace unos años, Cobb atrapó el balón que terminó el partido de playoffs entre los Packers y los Cowboys minutos después de que la recepción de Dez Bryant fuera revocada. En 2019, vestirá la estrella.
Si bien es difícil argumentar que en este momento Cobb es mejor jugador que Cole Beasley, el contrato que la administración le dio al nuevo integrante del equipo es muy razonable. El ex-Packer jugará bajo un contrato por un año y cinco millones de dólares. Lo que preocupa a muchos sobre Cobb es su salud, ya que en 2018 sólo jugó nueve partidos. Sin embargo, su carrera no ha estado plagada de lesiones como muchos lo asumen.
Cobb será un titular en esta ofensiva que utilizará su habilidad para ganar en rutas rápidas. Sus manos son muy confiables y le dará a Dak Prescott otra arma en el juego aéreo. Simple y sencillamente una muy buena contratación de los Dallas Cowboys.
¿Robert Quinn, Por Favor?
Esta semana se reportó que el defensive end Robert Quinn estaba de visita en The Star, las instalaciones de los Dallas Cowboys. El DE no es un agente libre, siendo que aún está bajo contrato con los Miami Dolphins. Sin embargo, ambos equipos están en discusiones para llevar a cabo un trade por el caza cabezas de 28 años.
Después de que Randy Gregory volviera a recibir una suspensión, DE apareció entra las necesidades más urgentes del equipo y si no logran atender dicha necesidad previo al NFL Draft, tendrán que utilizar uno de sus primeros picks para conseguir un jugador que juegue opuesto a DeMarcus Lawrence.
Quinn, quien había jugado la mayoría de su carrera con los Rams, aún es joven y productivo. En las últimas dos temporadas ha logrado conseguir 15 sacks. De conseguirlo, los Cowboys tendrían que trabajar en una extensión para él.
Con un año en su contrato actual, no debe de ser muy caro conseguir un trade por él. Me atrevería a decir que la compensación que los Dolphins buscan por Quinn debe de estar en el rango de una selección cuarta y quinta ronda.
Parece un movimiento probable, pero no es difícil imaginar a otro equipo estando interesado en el jugador. Por lo pronto, sabemos que Quinn disfrutó su tiempo con Rod Marinelli y con el equipo de los Cowboys esta semana. Habrá que esperar para saber su destino.
DL Kerry Hyder Helps Solidify A Re-Tooled Defensive Line
The Cowboys got off to a busy start to week two of free agency on Monday, and capped it off by signing defensive lineman Kerry Hyder to a one year deal.
The former Detroit Lion could be classified as a "one year wonder" of sorts, but when you look closer at his career arc, you see that Hyder can provide upside at multiple positions across the Cowboys' defensive front.
After having 8 sacks and 19 quarterback hits as a defensive end in 2016, Hyder missed all of 2017 with an achilles injury. Last season, under new head coach Matt Patricia, Hyder was moved out of position and forced to play as a nose tackle and 5-technique more often.
So, the last time Hyder was healthy and playing in the role in he will likely fill in Dallas, he was productive. Yes that was a couple of seasons ago but it makes Hyder worth the one year deal he received from the Cowboys.
What exactly is that role, though?
I see Hyder primarily as a rotational 3-technique for the Cowboys. At just 270 pounds Hyder isn't going to play over the center often, and won't be very useful as a 1-technique against the run. He's at his best when lining on the outside shade of an offensive lineman, where he can use his get-off and quickness to create pressure.
Kerry Hyder can also fill in at defensive end if needed, especially when the Cowboys go into a nickel package. Hyder is similar to Tyrone Crawford in his ability to move inside and out, but is a bit better of a pass rusher than Crawford when at his best.
Hyder is a high energy, motor, and character defensive lineman who will fit right in with a Rod Marinelli unit. If it all clicks for Hyder and he regains his 2016 form, the Cowboys will have stolen an impressive pass rushing defensive lineman who can win from multiple positions.
If Hyder is actually a "one year wonder" who is more of his 2018-self with the Cowboys despite being put in a better role to succeed, Dallas can move on rather quickly because he is only on a one year deal.
This is a smart signing by the Cowboys front office as they look to re-tool their defensive line, and avoid being pigeon-holed into over-drafting at a certain position this Spring.
New Cowboys WR Randall Cobb Announces His Signing With A Fantastic GIF
On Tuesday this week it became official the Cowboys would sign former Green Bay Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb to a one year deal worth an estimated $5 million. After his visit Monday morning, speculation around whether and when he would sign was swirling.
Cobb confirmed his intentions to join the Cowboys himself, and did so with some A+ GIF usage on Twitter.
In case you don't know, the GIF Cobb tweeted is Woody from Toy Story, emerging confidently and tipping his cap.
This was Cobb signaling that he his a Cowboy, and he appears excited to be joining America's Team. Cobb also received some social media love from his now former teammates in Green Bay, including wide receiver Davante Adams and quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
Aaron Rodgers had some parting words for new Cowboys WR Randall Cobb
Clearly Randall Cobb made an impact in Green Bay, both on and off the field. Let's hope he can replicate some of that in Dallas now that he has joined the Cowboys.
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