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Cooper Looking To Capitalize On His Chances


FRISCO, Texas – Amari Cooper knows all about the splits.

By this point in the season, it'd be hard not to. Cooper is sitting on his fourth 1,000-yard effort in five seasons, but it's awfully curious how much of that production has come at AT&T Stadium.

Through 14 games, Cooper has amassed 48 catches for 777 yards within the friendly confines of his home building, and just 23 catches for 296 yards everywhere else. Some basic math says that means he's only accounting for 27% of his production on the road.

Asked on Thursday how the Cowboys could change that, Cooper said it simply depends on him.

"It depends on what I do with the opportunity," he said.

That was Cooper's catchphrase this week – taking advantage of the opportunities. Despite tallying 1,073 yards and eight touchdowns, that hasn't always been the case. Injuries have played some role in that, but Cooper could also point back to nagging mistakes from earlier in the season – offensive pass interference penalties in New Orleans, dropped passed against the likes of New England and Green Bay.

Perhaps that's why, when Cooper was asked if he should have been named to the Pro Bowl, Cooper said no.

"I don't put myself above any of the guys who made it," he said. "I feel like I could've done so much more. So I definitely feel like it was all in my hands, and I came up short of that."

Ironically, Cooper played his worst home game of the season last week, when the Cowboys earned their most impressive victory. Working against Jalen Ramsey and the Rams secondary, he finished with just one catch for 19 yards on two targets.

Given the chance to let himself off the hook against an All-Pro corner, Cooper declined.

"Jalen knows how I feel about him, he knows I feel he's a great player," he said. "But I look at it like it don't matter who they put on me. I'm sure he looks at it the same way – it don't matter who they put on me. I feel like I should be able to do my thing."

For the record, Cooper said he's not worried about his target count if the Cowboys play well and win, like they did last weekend.

But going against a shaky Philadelphia secondary, and with the division title up for grabs, this would be a week the Cowboys could use a big game from their best receiver.

If he's going to do that, he'll need to take advantage of his opportunities.

"It depends on how I take advantage of those targets, if I'm targeted early," he said. "I would say it's a pretty good idea."