In sports and in life, money talks.
But for Amari Cooper, the calls to stay in Dallas were just too loud to ignore.
The deal for Amari Cooper includes $60M guaranteed. https://t.co/jbRilmb8jQ
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 17, 2020
In an interview with the Cowboys’ official website, Cooper elaborated upon his deal to stay at “Jerry World” until 2025.
“I just like everything about being a Dallas Cowboy,” he said. “I love the culture that we’ve created here and just the atmosphere both in the building and outside of the building, in terms of being in the city of Dallas and the surrounding areas. I guess that would be the same reasons why I was willing to take less money to stay here.”
“That coupled with the fact that I had the privilege of being able to play on a different team, I understand that every culture isn’t the same. Every city isn’t the same and every team isn’t the same. Me being able to see that while being on another team and to having the opportunity to be on a team that I really love, I wouldn’t trade that for a little bit more money.”
The contract he agreed to in March gave him the highest total value for a wide receiver.
Amongst his position, Cooper’s average annual value of $20 million is second only to the $22 million Julio Jones makes.
Close, But No Cigar For Washington
Despite his enormous contract, the fifth-year veteran had the opportunity to make even more money had he signed with the Washington Football Team.
Redskins offer to Amari Cooper was in the $22 million per year range. He agreed to a 5-year deal that will pay him $20 million per season to stay with the Cowboys https://t.co/aXYNcaoqG3
— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) March 17, 2020
Though they never disclosed the exact details, it appeared that Washington was all-in on Cooper.
New Washington head coach Ron Rivera confirmed the spirited pursuit of the four-time Pro Bowler.
“Amari was somebody we chased hard all the way until the end,” Rivera said, via JP Finlay of NBCSportsWashington.com. “We would’ve love to have him apart of what we’re trying to do here. He would’ve been a great veteran presence.”
The addition of Cooper would have been a boon for a franchise lacking in offensive playmakers.
His presence on the field would have helped second-year quarterback Dwayne Haskins take the next step in his development.
They would have also been able to improve their status while negatively impacting an NFC East rival.
Unfortunately for Washington, swinging for the fences ended up in a strikeout.
Bigger And Better In Texas
Since the 2018 trade that sent Cooper from the Raiders to the Cowboys, the wide receiver recaptured the upside that made him the No. 4 overall pick in the 2015 draft.
Cooper began his career with consecutive 1,000-yard seasons and looked like a bonafide star for the silver and black.
But in his last 20 games as a Raider, he amassed just 960 yards and eight touchdowns.
Dallas’s offense instantly benefited Cooper, who roared back to life with 725 yards and seven touchdowns in nine games.
He then followed up with a 2019 campaign that saw him record personal bests in receiving yards (1,189) and touchdowns (eight).
Even more impressive is that he posted these numbers while fighting through a myriad of leg injuries.
Now healthy and equipped with a new deal, Cooper will try to help Dallas find the playoff success that has recently eluded them.