The Redskins didn’t pry Amari Cooper away from their divisional rivals this offseason, but it wasn’t for a lack of trying. In a virtual presser on Tuesday, head coach Ron Rivera made it known that he was aggressive in his pursuit of the Cowboys star.
“Amari was somebody we chased hard all the way until the end,” Rivera said (Twitter link via The Team 980). “We would’ve loved to have him a part of what we’re trying to do here. He would’ve been a great veteran presence.”
The Redskins made their pitch to Cooper before he re-signed with the Cowboys on a five-year, $100MM extension. Had they landed him, Cooper would have made an immediate impact – the Redskins’ current group has a serious drop-off after rising sophomore Terry McLaurin. After they said farewell to Paul Richardson and lost tight ends Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis, there’s a clear need for pass-catchers in D.C.
Ultimately, the Redskins could not compete with the Cowboys in this battle, due in large part to taxes. In Texas, Cooper doesn’t have to pay any state income tax, and those percentage points make a huge difference when it comes to a nine-figure contract.
Last year, Cooper set career-highs in receiving yards (1,189) and TDs (eight), his first full season in Dallas. That performance landed him his fourth career Pro Bowl nod.
The former first-round pick won’t turn 26 until June, so his very best football should still be ahead of him. The Cowboys certainly hope that’s the case – his five-year deal takes him through 2024 and includes $60MM in guaranteed cash.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.