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Cooper Continues To Put Road Struggles To Rest


FRISCO, Texas – True to form, Amari Cooper isn't about to change his tune now.

Countless times to this point, the Cowboys' star receiver has insisted that his home/road splits were much ado about nothing. It's hard to say why he seemed to perform so much better at AT&T Stadium as opposed to opposing venues, but he never seemed to buy the narrative.

Cooper is proving himself correct this season, but that's not changing his opinion.

"I think it's one of those situations where people make a mountain out of a mole hill," Cooper said. "It's literally no difference to me when I play at home. It's the same football, everything."

It always seemed like a silly idea, but it's still nice to see Cooper debunk it. Fresh off this 30-7 drubbing of the Cincinnati Bengals, the Cowboys have now played seven of their eight road games this season. Unlike last season, Cooper has shown up big in the vast majority of them.

Across those seven games, Cooper has caught 42 passes for 427 yards and two touchdowns. With the exception of a down night in Philadelphia, when Ben DiNucci was the starting quarterback, he is averaging seven catches for 70 yards in road games this season.

As little as he might have thought of the storyline, Cooper did acknowledge that his splits were striking last season – though, that no longer seems to be the case.

"To give you guys some credit. I guess I can say it's something that was evident, that was out there in the open to see, that the splits were different, but I didn't think it was ever really a big deal," he said.

Sunday's game wasn't even gaudy statistically, but he did lead the team with four catches for 51 yards and a touchdown. It might not have been a dominating performance, but Cooper once again proved to be a reliable option for Andy Dalton – not to mention, his 11-yard touchdown catch midway through the second quarter gave the Cowboys a commanding 17-0 lead.

"It always feels great to get a 'W' because I've been in this league a number of years and wins are not easy to come by," he said.

It could have been a bigger day, too. With 5:55 to play in the game, Cooper beat his coverage easily on a slant-and-go and seemed to have an easy, 61-yard touchdown coming his way – only to watch Dalton find CeeDee Lamb over the middle, instead.

Given that the Cowboys won by 23 points, it's funny instead of tragic – but that doesn't mean Dalton didn't hear about it.

"He says that I owe him something, and that's my fault," Dalton said. "I wish I would've hung on that one a little longer and given him an opportunity."

There's three more weeks to make it up to him, and even if the road struggles are a myth, two of those three games will happen in the friendly confines of AT&T Stadium.

Regardless of where the games happen, Cooper has a chance to set career highs for yards and catches in a season – which says a lot more about his consistency than road vs. home splits ever could.

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