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Rapid Reaction: Amari Cooper, Dak Prescott Remain in Dallas (2020 Fantasy Football)

Mar 16, 2020

Dak Prescott should remain an elite fantasy QB.

The Dallas Cowboys will have the core of their offense intact in 2020 after assigning the franchise tag to quarterback Dak Prescott and signing Amari Cooper to a lucrative five-year deal. Our analysts have the fantasy impact of the Cowboys retaining two of their biggest stars:

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Q1. What is the fantasy football impact of the Cowboys franchising Dak Prescott and re-signing Amari Cooper?

There may not be a more underappreciated fantasy quarterback than Prescott, who is coming off a career-year. It’s not just last year that he’s been good, though. He’s been a top-12 fantasy quarterback each of the four years he’s been in the league, and he’s been consistent. What if I told you he’s been a more consistent fantasy quarterback than Drew Brees has been over the course of his career? Crazy, right? Their numbers are nearly identical. While I’m not comparing Prescott to Brees (who’s done it for a long time), but rather explaining why Prescott is undervalued. He’s locked in as a top-six fantasy quarterback after they locked-up Amari Cooper for the long haul. The re-signing with Dallas is beneficial for Cooper, as he’s now tied to a top-tier quarterback for a long time while playing in a dome. Over the course of his career, he’s averaged 90.3 yards and 0.58 touchdowns in 19 games under a roof, while averaging 58.3 yards and 0.38 touchdowns in 58 games outdoors. The downside is that he’s not going to see elite target numbers on a run-first team, though Ezekiel Elliott is getting older and Prescott has improved, so there’s room for improvement on his WR9 finish from 2019.
-Mike Tagliere (@MikeTagliereNFL)

Dak Prescott being assigned the franchise tag and Amari Cooper resigning with the Cowboys is tremendous news for that organization. After what they gave to acquire Amari, they had to make sure they kept him around long-term. The offense will now be able to continue taking the strides that it did last season and Prescott and Amari are now tied together for the foreseeable future. We’ll see how they look in this new Mike McCarthy offense.
-Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL)

Pretty much status quo for Prescott and the Cowboys, and that’s a good thing. Prescott set a career-high in passing attempts, completions, yards, and touchdowns last season, and will now be playing under Mike McCarthy. McCarthy always emphasized the pass during his stint as the coach of the Packers and he runs a fast-pace offense. With Amari Cooper also back in tow, there’s every reason to think Prescott will be a top-five quarterback once again. We saw in his time with the Raiders what happens to Cooper when he’s put in the wrong situation, so seeing him back with Dak Prescott and the Cowboys is relieving. The offense may change under Mike McCarthy, but it should continue to emphasize the pass and likely go more no-huddle given McCarthy’s history. That should keep Cooper a WR1 when healthy.
-Dan Harris (@danharris80)

Q2. Who else is impacted by Prescott’s and Cooper’s returns from a fantasy perspective?

The Cowboys tagging Prescott does nothing but help the skill-position players on the team, particularly Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup. Some would say he negatively impacts Ezekiel Elliott, but they work hand-in-hand, and force the defense to pick their poison. Cooper’s signing obviously caps the upside for someone like Gallup, who is coming into his own right now, though it’s very wise the Cowboys retained Cooper. While I like Gallup a lot, he’s a great compliment to Cooper and benefits from his presence, as he wouldn’t do as well if he started seeing top-tier cornerbacks. Despite playing in 14 games last year, Gallup still finished as the WR22, so this move doesn’t negatively impact him too much, just limits his upside.
-Mike Tagliere (@MikeTagliereNFL)

Michael Gallup is the one who should be breathing sighs of relief right now. To have his QB back and his running mate (who draws a lot of coverage away from him) was the dream scenario. Additionally, this is good news for Blake Jarwin, who the Cowboys just signed to an extension. He’ll benefit from having Dak Prescott back in the fold in 2020. Not a whole lot changes from a fantasy standpoint, but it’s the best possible scenario for all parties involved
-Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL)

Again, it’s mostly status quo here. When he’s not battling through an injury, Amari Cooper is a WR1 for fantasy purposes with the Cowboys with Prescott on the field; Dak’s passer rating with Cooper is 102.3 and just 92.8 without him, and he averages about a yard per attempt more with Cooper. Michael Gallup emerged last year and became a reliable fantasy option by the end of the season. All of that should remain the same heading into 2020, as expected. Cooper’s signing is a huge win for Prescott.
-Dan Harris (@danharris80)

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