The Oakland Raiders continue to sell off major pieces as Jon Gruden tears down the roster to build it up in his vision — which to this point seems to be an odd mix of gathering draft assets and also bringing in players that were good the last time he was coaching.
The biggest move, and the most controversial one, from the Raiders was dealing Khalil Mack to the Bears for a pair of first round pick, which was only made worse by Mack being great, the Raiders being awful rushing the passer, and Gruden continuously wondering why that was. Recently, we’d heard rumors that Amari Cooper, Oakland’s star receiver, was on the trade block, although Gruden denied knowing anything about that.
After the Raiders got thumped in London last week, the team had a bye this past weekend and used that time to work the phones, it seems. On Monday, ESPN’s Josina Anderson reported Cooper was going to be on the move to Dallas, a team that’s been sputtering on offense, in a trade.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter confirmed the deal, and reports Dallas will be sending a first round pick back to Oakland for Cooper.
This seems like a pretty good haul for the Raiders, who have now collected three first rounders this season via trade. It’s an aggressive move by the Cowboys, who at 3-4 could have a pretty solid first round pick, but they’re banking on Cooper helping to bring their passing game to life by giving Dak Prescott another top weapon on the outside. The Cowboys are a game and a half back of Washington in the NFC East after losing in miserable fashion on Sunday in D.C., and if this trade doesn’t turn things around for them offensively it could look really bad.
While Gruden and the Raiders were panned for the Mack trade, this seems like a trade that they’ve won as they are quite clearly entering a rebuild in Oakland (as they prepare to move to Las Vegas soon).