Amari Cooper might be one of the Dallas Cowboys with the most unjustified criticism headed his way. The star wide receiver has been with the team since 2018, and after a great first half-season with the Cowboys, fans’ feelings for Cooper are mixed. While some still think of him as an elite pass-catcher, others even argue that he isn’t the clear #1 over Michael Gallup and CeeDee Lamb.
But concerns about Amari Cooper are difficult to justify based on what he’s done on the field. After all, Cooper has been consistently productive in Dallas. He caught for over 1,000 yards in each of his last three seasons. Only once in his six-year NFL career has he been under that mark. He leads the NFL with three games with more than 200 receiving yards since 2015. And he’s proven to be one of the best deep threats in the NFL since 2019.
Most REC YDS on throws 20+ yards since 2019:
🔹Tyreek Hill – 858
🔹Stefon Diggs – 850
🔹D.K. Metcalf – 842
🔹Amari Cooper – 774 pic.twitter.com/yeTPtMNSmq
— PFF (@PFF) March 24, 2021
Yet, Amari Cooper is being questioned month after month by fans and analysts alike. Some have gone as far as suggesting that Amari is terrible on the road. And even though some numbers backed that storyline up for a short period of time, Cooper buried the ridiculous narrative in 2020.
But although the Dallas Cowboys wide receiver is still a great player, he’s been hurt. Injuries haven’t kept Cooper off the field, though. He’s played in every game since 2019 even when he hasn’t been able to be the same player he is when healthy.
In 2021, we don’t know if those problems will continue. The Cowboys’ wide receiver is dealing with ankle “irritation” and was virtually a non-participant in OTAs and minicamp. However, Mike McCarthy said in a press conference that he is “hopeful (Amari) will be ready for training camp.”
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that Cooper might not be ready for training camp. He added that the only thing Cooper can do right now is rest and that he wouldn’t be able to run in the next two or three weeks.
From @NFLTotalAccess: #Cowboys WR Amari Cooper may not be ready for training camp as he rests with hopes that an irritation in his ankle will calm down, while #Falcons WR Calvin Ridley underwent minor foot surgery. pic.twitter.com/NYEfRvAXHs
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) June 9, 2021
Fortunately for the Dallas Cowboys, training camp doesn’t begin until July 21st, approximately. This gives plenty of time for Amari Cooper to start running, and hopefully participate in camp.
In Dak Prescott’s comeback year, the Cowboys need Cooper to have the elite receiving corps unit we’ve been talking about for the past few months. As excited as Cowboys Nation is for Gallup and Lamb, #19 is the #1 receiver on the team when healthy.
Featured Image via Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports