Eatman: Some Teams Rent, Some Teams Buy 


FRISCO, Texas – It's just the world we live in now. Everything has to have a conclusion. Even before we've seen a single play, we have to declare something being right or wrong.

The Cowboys make a trade. The Eagles make a trade. Which team won and which team lost?

It's probably the reason why this country doesn't love soccer as much as others because we always, always, always must have a winner.

Even on trades like this, we're already trying to figure out who won? I don't think Golden Tate had even made it to Philadelphia, and I know Amari Cooper hasn't had a full week of practice yet. So I think it's only fair to give this a little bit of time before drawing conclusions.

But before you say, this NFC East team traded for a wide receiver and so did this one, let's also make sure and point out the major differences here.

If you heard our podcast "The Break" on Wednesday, I used this reference there, so I apologize in advance. But this really comes down to a team's desire to rent vs. own.

The Eagles decided to rent their wide receiver for the rest of the season and certainly didn't have to give up a hefty down payment. After eight games, they will have to make a decision on whether or not to stay there with Tate.

The Cowboys, meanwhile, have made more of an investment and have "purchased" Cooper, meaning they will have him for a while. This is their wide receiver of the present – and future – and he's not going anywhere.

If the Cowboys continue to struggle on offense, who knows what the coaching staff will look like. Who even knows what the quarterback position will look like. But it's safe to assume Cooper will be the team's No. 1 receiver for at least two years and probably more.

We've all said it over and over and over and over by now, but the reason the Cowboys traded for Cooper is that he's 24 years old. He's 24 now. He'll be 24 during the draft next April when his name gets mentioned one or two (hundred) times about why the Cowboys don't have a first-round pick.

But only then will we know if it was really worth or not.

By then, we'll also know whether or not the trade worked for the Eagles and if they chose to re-sign Tate in free agency.

But between now and then, I think we can all make a strong case for both teams on which deal was better.

For the Eagles, they get a more proven receiver in Tate, who certainly knows how to make plays against the Cowboys. A few weeks ago while playing for the Lions, Tate scored two touchdowns and caught all eight passes thrown his way.

Philly also gets a better route-runner, a strong slot receiver who can block. Plus, if he signs with another team in free agency next March, the Eagles will likely get a compensatory pick back for the 2020 draft. It's feasible they could spend a 2019 draft pick and get the same one back in 2020.

For the Cowboys, they've put a lot more risk in this trade by surrendering a No. 1 pick. At 3-4 right now, who knows where the season will go, although it's probably a safe bet to say somewhere between 7-9 and 9-7, based off history. But that could be a top-10 pick heading to Oakland for Cooper. If that happens, it'll be even worse because it means Cooper didn't help right away.

But let's not act like Cooper is the most valued receiver on the market this year. I think there's a perception that the Cowboys just threw out a No. 1 pick even though the Raiders were asking for a No. 2. Anyone who thinks that way, hasn't ever met Jerry or Stephen Jones.

The team the Cowboys are playing Monday night, yeah, they apparently were trying to get Cooper for a No. 1 as well. A handful of teams were trying to get him for a second-round pick.

Clearly, the fact you can get a 24-year-old receiver with two 1,000-yard seasons under his belt is something worth coveting.

Sure, he didn't have a great season in 2017 and this year has been up and down. But Cooper provides a services this team really needs and that's having a legitimate home-run threat. The Cowboys need someone who can at least back the defense off and away from the line of scrimmage.

We'll find out soon enough if Cooper is that guy. But at this point, the Cowboys figured it was worth the risk.

I said last week, this trade was like candy, it's about now and later. For the Eagles, their move is about now.

There are plenty of similarities in these moves, but a lot more differences to fairly compare the two.