3 reasons LA Rams WR Brandin Cooks bounces back in 2020

(Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images)
(Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images) /
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LA Rams Brandin Cooks
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I – Nobody expects much from him any longer

NFL defenses aim at the current stars on any team’s offense.  For the LA Rams receiving corps, that included either WR Cooper Kupp or WR Robert Woods.  Both accounted for over 1,000 receiving yards in 2019, and will likely put up even better numbers in 2020.  Cooks accounted for about half that amount.

Defenses dedicate their top pass defenders against the best offensive players. Defenses recognize the risks associated with each player and attempt to neutralize that by dedicating equal or greater skills to that player. In an average season for Cooks, the defense might place their best cornerback on him off the line, and ensure a safety looks his way to defend the deep ball.

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Based on his 2019 numbers, defenses will no longer dedicate that much to defend him. One defensive back, and perhaps simply a slot cornerback, will be the response from many defenses in 2020.

Offenses love Cooks’ speed and try to involve that break-away gallop at virtually any chance they get. That places Cooks into the running game as well, a risky move for a receiver who is prone to injury. Keeping Cooks exclusively a receiver will help keep him on the field.