Cowboys, Texans Trade Grades: Brandin Cooks has dealt for the fourth time in his career, giving Dallas an ideal speed threat

The Dallas Cowboys are acquiring wide receiver Brandin Cooks from the Houston Texans. CBS Sports NFL insider Jonathan Jones confirms this. According to ESPN, Houston will receive a fifth-round pick in 2023 and a sixth-round pick in 2024 as part of the trade.

The 29-year-old Cooks had 57 receptions for 699 yards and three touchdowns despite missing four games last season. He slips into a Dallas pass-catching group that also includes CeeDee Lamb, Michael Gallup and TY Hilton. Since arriving in the NFL, Cooks has recorded at least 42 receptions in each of his nine seasons. Six of his seasons ended north of 1,000 yards.

The former No. 20 overall pick has now been traded four times in his career after being traded to New Orleans in the 2014 NFL Draft. He played for the Saints in his first three NFL seasons before being traded to the Patriots. After a year in New England (2017), he transferred to the Rams, where he played two seasons, and then was shipped to the Texans, where he has played since 2020.

Cooks has two years left on his contract with an average salary cap of $25.5 million over that period. The Texans are paying $6 million from the Cooks’ contract for the 2023 season. according to reports.

Houston remains in position with Robert Woods and Nico Collins. The Texans are loaded with draft picks as part of the Deshaun Watson trade, giving General Manager Nick Caserio even more flexibility after the Cooks trade. Houston freshman head coach DeMeco Ryans is making some changes after the team won 3-13-1 last season. The Texans hold the #2 and #12 overall picks in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft.

Cooks’ numbers last year were his lowest totals since the 2019 season, the year before he was traded to Houston. Cooks was left frustrated with the organization after failing to receive timely treatment and sitting out a game for personal reasons. Now the receiver gets yet another restart, this time in Dallas.

trade classes

Cowboys: A

This is the latest step in a savvy offseason for Dallas. Cooks is a player they’ve been eyeing since the trade deadline last season and they’re now getting a song. Not only are the Cowboys giving up a few Day 3 draft picks over the next two seasons, but they’re also making the Texans pay $6 million from the Cooks’ contract for the 2023 season. Cooks is an ideal speed threat that will complement CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup on Dallas offense. The 29-year-old receiver has had numbers throughout his career even when inconsistently played at quarterback, so pairing on a Cowboys offensive line with Dak Prescott could have a very high ceiling.

Texans: D+

It became pretty clear that Cooks no longer wanted to be part of the Texas organization, so trying to maximize a return is admittedly difficult. While Day 3 draft picks are glorified lottery tickets for years to come, the more egregious aspect of this trade from Houston’s perspective is that the team is paying more than a quarter of their salary toward next season. That’s an unnecessary expense for a rebuild team that needs as much capital as possible to surround whoever will be its rookie QB with talent. Speaking of which, the Texans are pretty skinny in position as they roll out Robert Woods, Nico Collins and John Metchie III. Cowboys, Texans Trade Grades: Brandin Cooks has dealt for the fourth time in his career, giving Dallas an ideal speed threat

Chris Estrada

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