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Mailbag: Why Didn't Cooper Net As Much As Hill?


Green Bay and Kansas City both received high draft picks and multiple picks when they traded Davante Adams and Tyreek Hill. Why did Amari Cooper not generate the same type of package? — TONY CIX / THOMPSON FALLS, MT

David: I think there's two parts to that. The easy part is that Adams and Hill are better players. I've often said I think Amari is one of the Top 10-12 receivers in the league, but I think Adams and Hill are both squarely in the Top 3-5 conversation. The complicated part is the finances. The Cowboys telegraphed the fact that they didn't think Amari was worth his salary, and it was widely expected that he'd be released if he couldn't be traded. The Packers and Chiefs were never, ever going to cut either of those guys, so it was easier for them to command a high price.

Rob: The other thing I would add is Amari still had three years left on the five-year deal he signed in 2020. Adams was on the franchise tag and Hill had one year left on his deal. Both got new deals with their new teams, but that also meant the Raiders and Dolphins could structure those long-term contracts themselves rather than simply taking on an existing long-term deal like Cleveland did. Maybe that was a factor, too.

Two if's. If Texas A&M's Kenyon Green, Boston College's Zion Johnson and Iowa's Tyler Linderbaum are all available when the Cowboys pick in the first round, who would you prefer they get? If only Linderbaum is available, do they draft him and can Biadasz move to guard? — PAUL KARAM / HOUSTON, TX

David: If it were me, I'd draft Linderbaum, because I simply think he is the best of the three players. But the Cowboys need to do something about the guard spot in free agency, or else they might find themselves taking a guard purely because they need one – not because he's the best. To answer your other question, I do think they'd draft Linderbaum if their board fell that way. But I tend to think they'd probably just hold on to Biadasz as a valuable depth piece, rather than ask him to learn a new position.

Rob: Biadasz was a 41-game starter at center in college. That's his spot. At the moment, it seems more likely that he's the starting center again next season and the left guard will either be Connor McGovern or a draft pick. But I agree with Dave that it shouldn't mean a guy like Linderbaum is out of consideration. The offensive line is in transition, and they need good players, and most analysts seem to think he's the best interior lineman in the class.

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