Following Dallas’ shocking loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Wild Card Weekend, social media has been ablaze with conjecture about the future of Amari Cooper with the Cowboys.
According to Bryan Broaddus of 105.3 The Fan, “This team will be nothing like the one you just witnessed in 2021.”
Recently, The Fan stated that “(Team COO) Stephen Jones is well aware of this. It’s the reason why Zeke (Ezekiel Elliott) and Amari were depressed after the game.”
And this: “It feels like Amari Cooper has vanished,” 105.3 The Fan said. Bobby Belt, a writer for The Fan, contributed. “It’s only a feeling I have; nobody has told me that.”
However, the facts of the matter are that, with all due respect to our good colleagues at The Fan, the Cowboys haven’t made a final judgment on this matter yet.
There are repercussions for roster talent, and there are ramifications for the pay cap. The front desk is holding meetings on topics such as these and many others.
And one of the reasons we aren’t sure what will happen to Cooper is because we don’t know where he is. Cooper isn’t sure what will happen to Cooper.
“I don’t make those decisions,” he remarked when asked about his plans to return to Dallas. “I honestly don’t know, but I’m hoping for the best.”
Cooper – the perennial Pro Bowler who had six catches for 64 yards and a touchdown in the Cowboys’ 23-17 loss at AT&T Stadium,
and who had 865 receiving yards and eight touchdowns on 68 catches during the regular season – did not have his best season.
If we’re merely comparing those stats to his compensation, we’re dealing with a “value” problem.
However, there are a few noteworthy aspects of this story, including the fact that Cooper, 28 years old, recently purchased a $6 million home in North Texas (which suggests that he plans to remain in the area).
He does have a five-year, $100 million contract with the Dallas Mavericks, which keeps him under contract with the team until 2024. However,
the agreement (under which he will be required to count $22 million against the team’s salary cap next season) cannot be avoided.
However, if he is rostered on the fifth day of the 2022 league year, his $20 million base salaries will become fully guaranteed; however, if he is transferred after June 1, only $2 million of dead money will be left on his account.
As a result, the Cowboys may free up $20 million in storage space.
However, they could also decide to part ways with him before June 1, which would free up $16 million while increasing the dead-money impact to $6 million.
Is Amari going to be “gone”? It’s an option to consider.
Furthermore, while other media sites have used the term “moving” to indicate “traded,”
we consider it to mean “released;’ we are unsure of which NFL team would be willing to spend $22 million for a wideout at this time.
Dallas is up against it in terms of salary cap space. A room of $16 million to $20 million would be extremely valuable.
But, if Cooper is no longer available, wouldn’t the Cowboys need to acquire a new wide receiver to take his place? CeeDee Lamb has been hired and is currently under contract.
The team’s other starting quarterback, Michael Gallup, is headed for unrestricted free agency (while undergoing offseason injury rehabilitation), while Cedrick Wilson is also a free agent.
Broaddus’ claim that “this squad will be nothing like the one you just witnessed in 2021” is blatantly exaggerated; it’s likely that 60 to 70 percent of this lineup will remain in place.
In the end, though, there are certain costly elements (Elliott included) that did not pay off for the Dallas Cowboys.
And now, in 2022, a decision will be made on whether or not Amari Cooper’s $20 million-plus contract will be worth it.
It’s a decision that may mean the difference between the Cowboys having a Pro Bowl player and having cap space.
Dallas officials have yet to make a decision on the matter, despite the fact that we are five weeks into the summer.