Cleveland Browns receiver Amari Cooper recently put a vote of confidence in CeeDee Lamb as the third-year receiver is preparing to take the reins atop the Cowboys wide receiver depth chart.
When Cooper was traded to the Browns for a fifth round pick earlier this offseason, it left a hole in the Cowboys passing game. The Miami-native was traded to Dallas midway through the 2018 season. Despite wearing the star on his helmet for only nine games that year, Cooper still led the team in receiving yards. Cooper kept that streak alive in the 2019 and 2020 seasons, but last season Lamb took the receiving crown from Cooper.
Cooper played a total of 56 games in Dallas, but he still amassed the ninth-most receiving yards and 13th most receiving touchdowns in Cowboys history.
While many fans and media members have speculated whether Lamb is ready to fill such big shoes, Cooper had this to say on 1310 ‘The Ticket’:
“CeeDee’s been ready. Again, it’s just about opportunity. I think if Kellen decides to feature him, he’s definitely ready to step up.”
While with the Cowboys, Cooper had made subtle remarks about wanting more opportunities in offensive coordinator Kellen Moore’s gameplan.
Cooper continued talking about how skilled Lamb is despite only having two years of experience under his belt:
“CeeDee is a playmaker. I’m just reminded of that Vikings game when we were breaking the huddle. He was ready, then. He was like “I want this fade,’ We’ve all seen what he’s able to do when you throw him the fade. He’s been read. He’s going to make the plays when his jersey number is called. And I can’t wait to see it happen.”
CeeDee Lamb 2021 stats
In 2021, Lamb was selected to his first Pro Bowl. He posted 1,102 receiving yards on 79 catches and five touchdowns. That’s 237 more receiving yards than Cooper.
Lamb serving as WR1 isn’t causing much concern for Cowboys fans. Behind him is Dalton Schultz, who had a career-high 808 receiving yards last season, and Michael Gallup has proven in past seasons that he’s capable of stepping into the WR2 role. But Gallup may miss time early as he continues recovering from a torn ACL suffered in week 17 in 2021.
However, the pass catchers behind the top three options may keep the Dallas faithful up at night. Rookie Jalen Tolbert tore up the Sun Belt Conference during his college days at South Alabama, but time will tell if vthat success continues in the pros. The Cowboys also picked up veteran receiver James Washington who has averaged 407 receiving yards per season, serving a limited role for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Mike McCarthy came out earlier in the offseason sayingTony Pollard will be incorporated in the passing game more in 2022. McCarthy’s reasoning is to get Pollard more snaps without taking playing time from Ezekiel Elliott. But in reality, it’s likely a scheme to improve the passing game without spending money in free agency or losing personnel or draft capital via trade.