One of the few bright spots for the Houston Texans last season is going to be sticking around for a little while longer. Brandin Cooks, the 28-year old veteran wide receiver acquired in a trade with the Rams two years ago, signed a two-year extension with your favorite Houston-based football team that is not named the Roughnecks or
Katy Tigers Atascocita Eagles.
WR Brandin Cooks has agreed to a new two-year extension with the Texans, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 7, 2022
The new contract will keep Cooks in Houston through the 2024 season and includes $36 million in guaranteed money.
Brandin Cooks' two-year contract extension has $36 million guaranteed with $19.8 million maximum average annually, per a league source— Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) April 8, 2022
Prior to agreeing to an extension, Cooks had been the subject of numerous potential trade deals as part of the Texans’ long-term rebuilding project. However none of those deals materialized into anything serious. Before the extension, Cooks was owed $12.5 million in base salary for 2022 as part of the contract the Texans inherited from the Rams when they traded for him.
While it would have made sense for Cooks to be traded before the 2022 NFL Draft for a second or third round pick (depending on which rumors you believed), it also made sense to keep him here for one last contract extension before he hit the dreaded age 30 cliff that usually denotes the sharp decline in a player’s skills. Lovie Smith, who is somehow Houston’s head coach, touted Cooks’ leadership as one of the big selling points for keeping the wide receiver around.
“It seems like whenever you talk about Brandin, anyone, they talk about leadership...you don’t say that about everybody. You have to do something really well in order for people to describe you that way.
“And for me, being in a different role last year and just seeing him from afar. ... I knew about him before I got there. Just saw how he handled his business each day. The professionalism that he had. The routine. All the things I know the good football players I’ve been around do on a daily basis is what I saw from Brandin.”
Last year, Cooks served as the primary beneficiary of David Culley’s offense, if you could call what we saw last year an offense, posting over 1,000 yards and six touchdowns, both of which led the team in 2021.
To give you an idea on how much of Houston’s offense was shouldered by Cooks last season, according to Pro Football Reference, the Texans racked up a total of 3,630 receiving yards last season as a team. Cooks put up 1,037 of them, accounting for almost 30% of the team’s total receiving yardage that year. His six touchdowns also accounted for nearly 30% of the team’s total receiving touchdowns in 2021 as well. Not...uh...not exactly great.
But one can hope, as a diehard Texans fan, that Cooks will help second-year quarterback Davis Mills as his go-to security blanket and develop the quarterback into, hopefully (again, that word), a player who can justify his selection in the third round of last year’s draft.
Speaking personally, I would have been fine with Cooks either being traded and getting the additional draft picks or staying around as the focal point of a rebuilding offense that has a long way to go toward getting back to respectability.
So Brandin Cooks is sticking around, and his talents as a well-above-average receiver will be most welcome this year. How are y’all feeling about Cooks’ extension? Wish we got picks instead? Happy he can still contribute something? Let us know in the comments!