Last season, the Dallas Cowboys were struggling offensively because they did not have a legitimate number one wide receiver, after releasing Dez Bryant. The fact that tight end Jason Witten also decided to retire before the season also affected their offense.
After struggling through the first nine games of the season, team owner Jerry Jones decided to trade a first-round pick to the Oakland Raiders to acquire Amari Cooper. Jones was ridiculed for the decision because the experts felt he gave up too much for Cooper who had been struggling in Oakland at the time.
Despite the trade being panned by most experts, Cooper immediately jump started Dallas’ stagnant offense and helped the team win the NFC East, which didn’t look possible at the time they made the trade.
He finished his half of the season with the Cowboys with 53 catches for 725 yards and six touchdowns. Quarterback Dak Prescott, who averaged 6.88 yards per attempt before Cooper’s arrival, averaged 7.71 yards per attempt with Cooper in the lineup.
When asked about what made him successful in Dallas last season after a slow start in Oakland, Cooper credited the chemistry between himself and his quarterback, while adding that he expects bigger things this year.
“I feel like the only way to go is up with me and Dak,” Cooper said, via Jon Machota of the Dallas Morning News. “We just have a natural chemistry. That’s rare, because you can’t just combine two players, a receiver and a quarterback, and say, ‘Hey, just go out there and have a good game.’ It takes the quarterback and the receiver, their skill-set has to match, and it just happened like that.”
“We’ve been practicing. We’ve been throwing,” Cooper said. “I know him a lot more. I know how he likes to throw the ball. He knows how I like to run my routes. I feel like we’re getting better.”