Houston wide receiver Brandin Cooks is no stranger to trade rumors, having been dealt three times in his career. The 1-6 Texans are obvious trade deadline sellers, and Cooks — a high-end talent who is only under club control through the 2022 season — has naturally drawn interest from other clubs.
Those clubs may have been buoyed in their pursuit by the fact that Cooks took to Twitter to voice his displeasure when Houston traded good friend Mark Ingram earlier this week. However, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com says the Texans are unlikely to trade Cooks. Rookie GM Nick Caserio reportedly sees Cooks as a foundational talent that he can build around, and it sounds as if he would demand a hefty return if he were to trade his WR1.
Cooks’ $12.5MM base salary for 2022 is reasonable for a player of his caliber, which explains both why Caserio wants to keep him around and why he is piquing the interest of contending teams hoping to acquire him. Despite catching passes from struggling rookie Davis Mills for most of the year, Cooks has tallied 45 receptions for 502 yards and a score.
Of course, most of the trade chatter surrounding the Texans has been focused upon QB Deshaun Watson, but we learned earlier today that Watson is not expected to be dealt prior to Tuesday’s deadline. However, LB Zach Cunningham is on the trading block, and other veterans like QB Tyrod Taylor, RB Phillip Lindsay, LB Christian Kirksey, and CB Desmond King could also be on the move.
Speaking of King, the former First-Team All-Pro was scratched from today’s game against the Rams for disciplinary reasons, as Aaron Wilson of SportsTalk 790 tweets. King reportedly had an unexcused absence from a team activity, and like Cooks, he may be unhappy with the current state of the Texans. Unlike Cooks, he might get a chance to suit up for a contender this year.