The Raiders have until May 3 to exercise Amari Cooper‘s fifth-year option, a decision that is nothing short of a no-brainer. Ideally, however, the Raiders would like to lock up the star wide receiver for the long haul. Discussions on a new contract appear to be underway.
“We’ve been in contact with his agent,” McKenzie said (via PFT). “I don’t want to put anything out there, don’t want to put the cart before the horse so to speak, but we like Amari.”
The fifth-year option for Cooper would cost the Raiders $13.924MM in 2019, but a new multi-year deal would have to provide Cooper with more than that on an average annual basis. The high-priced deals signed by this year’s free agent receivers, as well as the mega-extension for Bucs wideout Mike Evans, will only boost Cooper’s leverage in talks.
Coooper, who doesn’t turn 24 until June, has more than 2,900 receiving yards over the past three years. He positioned himself as one of the league’s best receivers right out of the gate as a rookie when he earned a Pro Bowl nod in 2015. He earned Pro Bowl honors once again in 2016 when he caught 83 passes for 1,153 yards and five scores.
Cooper’s numbers were less impressive last year, but he’ll look to get back on track under new head coach Jon Gruden. Opposing defenses will be paying some attention to new WR2 Jordy Nelson, though it’s debatable as to whether he is a bigger threat to teams than former teammate Michael Crabtree.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.