Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has been outspoken about his displeasure with the way the 2021 NFL season ended for his team. Together with the Dallas fanbase, he was extremely disappointed and had much higher expectations for a potential postseason run.
Among the many things he was particularly unhappy about in reference to this season was the way they misused wide receiver Amari Cooper.
Jerry Jones believes Amari Cooper should have been targeted more
Jerry Jones made it very clear that he was unhappy with the way Amari Cooper was used during the Dallas Cowboys' game against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Wild Card round of the NFL Playoffs.
Amari Cooper was targeted ten times and recorded six receptions for 60 receiving yards and one touchdown. That's a relatively good statistical line, but Jerry Jones believes the Cowboys could have better utilized their star wide receiver. He is frustrated that they didn't make it a priority to get the ball in the hands of their best offensive players, regardless of how the defense was set up.
The reduced usage of Amari Cooper has been a trend for the Dallas Cowboys during the 2021 season. Cooper had his least productive season as a Cowboys player this year after joining the team during the 2018 season when he was traded by the Raiders.
Amari Cooper finished the 2021 season with 68 receptions on 104 targets for 865 receiving yards. All three of these totals are his lowest since joining the Dallas Cowboys.
Based on the comments made by Jerry Jones, the obvious dip in production from Cooper is one of the issues the Cowboys owner had with how Dallas played this year and how the team ultimately ended their season.
Prior to the start of the 2020 NFL season, Amari Cooper was given a massive contract. The deal is worth a total of 100 million dollars over five years. His salary cap hit of 22 million dollars in the 2021 season makes him the highest paid wide receiver in the NFL. The contract that Jones gave Cooper indicates the high expectations that he and the Cowboys have for the latter.
The contract has a team option built in for this coming offseason. The Cowboys now have the ability to cut Cooper and would not owe the remaining three years and 60 million dollars on the contract. The money will be guaranteed when the 2022 season begins. Jones' recent comments show how important he believes Cooper is to the team, so maybe he is leaning towards keeping him.