Dallas Cowboys receiver Amari Cooper will not play in Week 11 and may miss Thursday’s Thanksgiving game against the Raiders.
Whenever things start to go too well for the Dallas Cowboys, something always happens to throw a wrench in the works.
After pundits dubbed the Cowboys a Super Bowl favorite, they got slammed into the Earth’s core by the Denver Broncos — at home, no less. Now a week after bouncing back with a convincing destruction of the Atlanta Falcons, the Cowboys have been dealt another blow.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, star wide receiver Amari Cooper has been placed on the COVID-19 list. It reportedly happened on Thursday, which means this not only takes him out of this Sunday’s game against the Chiefs but may mean he’s out for Thursday’s Thanksgiving Day game against the Raiders.
The #Cowboys have placed star WR Amari Cooper on the COVID-19 list, knocking him out Sunday and putting his availability for Thursday in doubt as well.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 19, 2021
This marks the second time this year where a marquee player will be forced to miss a game against the Kansas City Chiefs due to COVID protocols. Two weeks ago, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers tested positive for COVID and was forced to miss a showdown with Patrick Mahomes.
With Amari Cooper out, Dak Prescott must step up
Thankfully for the Cowboys, the Dallas offense revolves around Dak Prescott and not Cooper. Losing one of his top wideouts in a game the Cowboys cannot afford to lose, however, is obviously less than ideal.
Kansas City’s defense hasn’t been much to write home about this season, especially it’s secondary. However the unit has begun to shore things up in recent weeks, allowing far fewer yards through the air than it had been earlier in the season. Daniel Sorensen is still involved, but even he has managed to mitigate mistakes that were making it a joy to pass against the Chiefs defense.
Prescott is striding toward the front of the MVP conversation, and a big game against the Chiefs on Sunday will go a long way in ensuring his stock continues to gain value.
Amari Cooper out: Who is the next man up in Dallas?
Not having Cooper is bad, but it’s hardly fatal.
Prescott still has CeeDee Lamb, and has managed to turn the likes of Michael Gallup and Dalton Shultz into weapons this year — which further solidifies his MVP candidacy. Noah Brown is directly behind Cooper on the Cowboys depth chart, and Cedrick Wilson is likely to see more action, especially since he was already an active part of the offense even with Cooper healthy.
Dallas faces the Las Vegas Raiders on a short turnaround after Sunday’s late-afternoon game in Kansas City. Cooper’s status for that game remains in doubt, but we’re about to see just how good Dak Prescott is over th next two games if he’s forced to continue the Cowboys push for a division title without one of his top targets.