With the NFL closing in on another action-packed trade window, Brandin Cooks finds himself right at the center of discussions and rumors once again. It’s become a common theme in the current Houston Texans receiver’s nine-year career.
He’s actually been traded three times in his career already, so this is nothing new for the player. Yet, if Cooks is dealt again, he would tie an NFL record for being traded four times in his career, matching Eric Dickerson.
But teams aren’t just discussing a Cooks trade to try and get in on setting a new record, this 29-year-old speedster can help a lot of teams looking to contend. Meanwhile, he doesn’t fit Houston’s competitive timeline, so it only makes sense to shop the talented receiver around.
With that said, here are three ideal Brandin Cooks trade destinations ahead of the Nov. 1 deadline.
Brandin Cooks touches down in Green Bay
It’s become painstakingly obvious that Aaron Rodgers hasn’t been happy with the production he’s been getting from his receiving corps since Davante Adams walked out the door. Despite signing Sammy Watkins, and drafting Christian Watson 34th and Romeo Doubs 132nd, the Green Bay Packers have essentially failed to replace the two-time All-Pro receiver in one offseason.
With the NFL trade deadline looming, Rodgers hasn’t been quiet about voicing his displeasure with his teammates, as well as let it be known that he expects his front office to be active in discussions to add a pass-catcher before Nov. 1.
Clearly showing his impatience for lackluster play, adding a veteran such as Cooks could go a long way toward easing the tension within the locker room at Lambeau Field. Cooks, having been traded three times already in his career, is no stranger to learning a new playbook and could potentially get on the same page quicker than a lot of other talented targets who may be available.
Cooks joins Buffalo’s kitchen
- Brandin Cooks contract: Cap number of $9.7M in 2022, $26.6M in 2023, $24.6M in 2024
The Buffalo Bills may not currently have the cap space to fit Cooks’ 2022 cap hit on the books, but when you’re the current Super Bowl favorites, it only makes sense for general manager Brandon Beane to constantly look into adding another piece for the right price. While that could mean adding another running back, such as Kareem Hunt, why not add another weapon for arguably the game’s best QB?
With Stefon Diggs and Gabe Davis already demanding tons of attention from opposing defenses, having another quick receiver who can do damage downfield with Cooks would give Buffalo a vital third weapon that they haven’t consistently had since Cole Beasley’s departure.
The Bills have all their own draft selections in 2023, plus an extra fifth-rounder from Arizona. But if there’s one thing learned from the Los Angeles Rams’ success, when your championship window is open, you better make sure you capitalize.
In other words, if you win the Super Bowl, you won’t care how many draft picks you have in the following season. Is Josh Allen under contract? That’s all that matters in Buffalo.
Baltimore adds 1,000-yard receiver
- Brandin Cooks stats: 28 receptions, 281 receiving yards, 1 TD catch
A team that’s seemingly always searching for the right mix of receivers to fit the Lamar Jackson offense, Cooks could become the next flavor of the month in Baltimore. For both Cooks and Jackson, the opportunity to team up has to be enticing. For Jackson, he’d be getting a receiver who’s posted a 1,000-yard season each time he’s finished a full year, or six out of his eight NFL seasons to date.
Cooks is not only reliably productive as a pass-catcher, he’s shown to be an above-average run blocker, or at least according to Pro Football Focus, grades higher than both Rashod Bateman and Devin Duvernay this season. Cooks’ yards per reception have been down the past two seasons (11.5 and 10 in 2022), but this may be a product of Davis Mills and a lack of another viable option in the Houston offense.
If the Ravens can add a proven receiver in Cooks for a mid-round draft pick ahead of the trade deadline, general manager Eric DeCosta shouldn’t have any second thoughts about paying the price.