CeeDee Lamb was a gift from the gods to the Dallas Cowboys. Wide receivers weren't exactly a need in Dallas back in 2020, but there was no way the Cowboys could've left a player with Lamb's talent slipping across the board.
With the 17th pick, it's really hard to find a player of Lamb's caliber this deep in the first round. The Cowboys made the right decision by selecting him, especially because their main rival for the division that season, the Philadelphia Eagles, surely would've picked Lamb four picks later. Instead, the Eagles ended up with Jalen Reagor, a receiver who had a disappointing rookie season.
During his rookie season, Lamb had already showcased his skills as an elite NFL receiver. Now, everything points to the fact that he's going to surpass Amari Cooper and be the number one receiver in Dallas.
3 reasons why CeeDee Lamb will surpass Amari Cooper as the Cowboys top WR
#1 Lamb has a higher ceiling than Cooper
The number one reason is pretty simple: when both players are at their peak, Lamb is a better player, and it'll show during this season as he gets more experience.
Now, that's not a shot at Amari Cooper. He's a fantastic receiver as well and one of the best route runners in the NFL. But if you consider Lamb's athletic potential and what he showed during his college career and his rookie season, you can clearly envision him surpassing Cooper in a couple of years.
Cooper was a top 5 pick, Lamb fell until the middle of the first night. But Cooper's floor was higher back then and it's tough to see how we can improve even more in the NFL. CeeDee, on the other hand, could grow a lot over the next two seasons and be part of the NFL's elite list.
It's a good problem for the Cowboys to have, of course.
#2 Cooper's contract gets easy to move on next season
Money will obviously play a part here, as the Cowboys will have important decisions to make next season in regards to the salary cap. The important date is the 5th league day of 2022, as Cooper's salary gets fully guaranteed then.
As of now, Dallas sits with almost 23 million over the cap for next season, and they can clear 16 of them if they release or trade Cooper, who'll account for 22 million dollars on the salary cap and 6 million if he leaves the Cowboys.
The franchise doesn't have a lot of options to clear cap space, so making Lamb officially the number one receiver would help the Cowboys' financial situation next season. Plus, this would help the team make a push to re-sign Michael Gallup and keep at least two above-average receivers on the roster.
The obvious point here, of course, is that Cooper's will only be 28 when next season starts, so Dallas can make a great return through a trade.
#3 Lamb's still on a rookie contract
While Cooper is on his second contract, Lamb is still incredibly cheap and he'll probably not be a factor in the Cowboys' salary cap until at least 2025.
If you have a player with an incredibly high ceiling whose cost is minimal for his talent, then it'd be an easy decision to retain and develop him.
The Cowboys know what they have in Cooper and what it costs them. It's time for them to discover what Lamb can achieve as the main receiver for the team.