The Cowboys are trading a first-round draft pick to the Raiders in exchange for wide receiver Amari Cooper, the two teams announced Monday.
Former NFL defensive back Jerraud Powers first reported the deal, which was later confirmed by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, ESPN’s Adam Schefter and others.
Rapoport reported Cooper's fifth-year option for $13.9 million comes off the books for Oakland. With the trades, the Raiders now have $74 million in cap space and three first-round picks entering the 2019 offseason.
NFL Network's Jane Slater reported Cowboys receiver Brice Butler was released to make room for Cooper.
Cooper has 22 receptions and 280 yards in six games this season, though the vast majority of that production came in just two games (10 catches for 116 yards against the Broncos and eight catches for 128 yards and a touchdown against the Browns). He had no catches and was targeted just once in Oakland’s loss to the Seahawks last week.
The Cowboys’ passing game has been their weak link thus far this season. Dallas ranks 29th in passing yards per game with 183.1, while their rushing offense is third-best in the league with 136.9 yards per game. Dez Bryant and Jason Witten, who led the team in receptions last season, are no longer with the club. In their place, Dallas is led by Cole Beasley (350 passing yards) and tight end Geoff Swaim (205 yards).
Cooper is the second star player traded away by new Raiders head coach Jon Gruden, following the trade of pass-rusher Khalil Mack just before the start of the season. Cooper is also under contract for next season, with a cap hit of $13.9 million, after which he will be an unrestricted free agent.
The Cowboys lost to Washington 20–17 on Sunday when Brett Maher’s game-tying field goal attempt in the final seconds clanged off the upright. A win in that game would have given Dallas the lead in the NFC East. Instead, the Cowboys sit at 3–4, tied with the Eagles for second place.