The Cleveland Browns were thrilled to get Amari Cooper for a mere fifth-round pick but Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones still stands by the move
On paper, it looks as though the Cleveland Browns absolutely smoked the Dallas Cowboys in their Amari Cooper trade. For a fifth-round pick and a swapping of sixth-rounders, Cleveland landed a No. 1 wide receiver.
Cooper finished the year with 78 receptions for 1,160 yards and nine touchdowns. His presence also helped Donovan Peoples-Jones flourish, due to all the attention he commanded.
Despite the output, Dallas owner Jerry Jones still believes he made the right call and is citing the salary cap as the main reason.
"“When I look at the salary involved, over $20 million a year, and I look at what we got with that salary to help this team that we wouldn’t have been able to have with this team, had we kept him, I like what we did,” Jones said per Pro Football Talk."
It’s easy to laugh at what Jones said since Cooper played so well but Dallas had to make some moves due to some self-inflicted salary cap issues. While they comically overpaid Ezekiel Elliott, the truth was, they couldn’t get out of that deal just yet.
They could, however, get out of the Cooper contract with a trade partner, and they found one in Cleveland.
Browns and Cowboys are both happy with the trade
Cleveland was clearly thrilled with what Cooper brought to the table but the Cowboys were right about one thing as well — CeeDee Lamb was ready to take over as their No. 1 wide receiver.
The third-year pro was phenomenal with 107 receptions for 1,359 yards, and nine touchdowns. All of those numbers top anything Cooper has done in his career and the nine touchdowns they each had in 2022 was a personal best for both.
Throw in the fact that Lamb was without Dak Prescott for six games and his performance is even better.
Again, this doesn’t suggest Dallas won the trade, by any means. They put themselves in a hole and were counting on Lamb, Michael Gallup, and Jalen Tolbert to step up. Only Lamb did, but that doesn’t mean they regret the move. It just means they’re likely going to look for more help around Lamb and now can do so by moving on from Ezekiel Elliott.
In the end, both teams are happy. Dallas got some cap relief and had a viable No. 1 to step up and Cleveland landed a No. 1 for some late-round moves. It’s safe to say the Browns would agree with Jones that there are no regrets here.