NFL Trade Rumors: Raiders reportedly want first-round pick for Amari Cooper as season spirals
Oakland is willing to deal just about anyone and everyone not drafted by Jon Gruden
The Oakland Raiders season is unfolding as a real-time trainwreck, with the Raiders before the year started and then promptly cratering out of the gate with a 1-5 start. They have one win, an overtime victory at home over the Browns. They and got roundhoused by the Seahawks.
And as Khalil Mack may have been only the , as the team is actively shopping former first-round pick Karl Joseph, who has underperformed since being taken out of West Virginia.morning, everything is for sale in Oakland. The Raiders trade to ship out
There is a chance Derek Carr, the would-be franchise quarterback for Oakland, could be on the way out as well. and as the season grinds along and the offense stalls out, .
Also a possibility? Former first-round pick Amari Cooper could be traded by the Raiders as soon as this season, according to a report from Jay Glazer of FOX Sports.
Are you sensing a theme yet? Because you should be, with that theme being Jon Gruden openly blowing up the roster that Reggie McKenzie built and looking to submarine everything before trying to turn it around as the Raiders head to Vegas.
Per Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, Gruden is even managing to blow things up with highly unrealistic expectations: Rapoport reports that Gruden and the Raiders are asking for a first-round pick for Cooper.
"The other one that came out yesterday, Amari Cooper, which is something that would have been unthinkable a couple of weeks ago or certainly a couple of months ago. But the Raiders have had some conversations about potentially trading for him. My understanding is they've asked for a first-round pick in exchange for Amari Cooper, which is incredibly significant and which might make it difficult, if not impossible, to trade him."
So it sounds like the Raiders WANT a first-round pick for Cooper, versus the Raiders hearing out offers involving a first-round pick for Cooper. Because it's pretty unlikely they're going to get that kind of a haul for Cooper, for several reasons.
One, Cooper is in the final year of his rookie contract. He has a fifth-year option for $13.9 million next year, but he is going to want a long-term deal from someone pretty soon. So not only do you need to surrender a first-round pick, but you need to surrender a ton of cap space.
Second, Cooper was just ruled out from the Week 6 game with a concussion. That's going to make it tough to get a big price for the wide receiver, because of concerns about his short- and long-term health. I think Cooper will be fine for the long haul, but the trade deadline is just a few weeks away. A concussion absolutely complicates a deal in this case.
And finally, there's the matter of Cooper's production. The former Alabama product exploded on the scene with a 1,070-yard season as a rookie and followed it up with an impressive 1,153-yard campaign in his second season. But he caught just 48 passes for 680 yards as the Raiders failed to live up to expectations from their lofty 2016. This year he's been all over the map: Cooper has two games with 115 yards or more and four games with less than 20 yards. Cooper's had drop issues in the past as well.
Gruden keeps talking about him as if the Raiders are going to make him a focal point of the offense and then summarily letting it leak they're willing to take something back in a trade. The whole thing seems fishy.
But everything about Oakland this year feels wrong. Gruden is locked in with a 10-year, $100 million contract, making him unfireable. Not that the Raiders would want to can him in his first season, but the results on the field are hardly what you expect when you outlay that kind of cash. Maybe it's all part of a complex rebuild, but it certainly hasn't been sold as that.
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