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Linehan Ready To Give Cooper A "Big Workload"


FRISCO, Texas – The Cowboys gave up a first-round draft pick for Amari Cooper, and they're well aware of what that means.

So with Cooper having had two weeks to acclimate to his new surroundings, don't look for this coaching staff to bring him along gradually. To hear it from his new offensive coordinator, Cooper figures to play a prominent role in his Cowboys debut on Monday night.

"He's going to be starting at wide receiver and playing a significant number of snaps," said Scott Linehan on Friday. "How many those are, we determine that a little more the day before the game. But we're not really easing him in to this situation, he's got a pretty big workload."

Maybe that's not a surprise. Cooper is a two-time Pro Bowler and a fourth-year veteran, after all. But it's at least noteworthy to know that the former Raider is picking things up quickly in this Cowboys offense – to the point that the Cowboys trust him to be a big part of Monday's game plan.

"What's impressed us the most is just his approach, very serious-minded, very much of a football guy, immersed in what we're trying to do, picking things up quickly," said Cowboys coach Jason Garrett.

Cooper's new quarterback would agree. Dak Prescott talked at length about what a quick student his new wide out is. Prescott FaceTimed with Cooper and receivers coach Sanjay Lal during the off weekend, and the duo sit just one locker apart from each other in the Cowboys' locker room.

"We're, what, four or five practices in? We've had some time to talk -- mentally what I think on certain routes, what he expects," Prescott said. "We've had a couple of really good days, and I'm excited about it.

The hope is obviously that Cooper brings some long-awaited cache to the receiver corps. Prescott said he trusts that a highly-talented player like Cooper will get himself open, it's simply on him to get the ball out.

So Linehan is ready for Cooper to play a big part, and Prescott feels good about the progress they've made. The only question left is how well it'll translate – and how quickly.

"I think people respect him, they know who he is. He's a guy that can hurt the defense in a lot of ways with his skill set," Linehan said. "We'll see as these games go forward. We'll take them one at a time."