Amari Cooper Fantasy Value Could Be at All-Time High in Dallas During 2019 NFL Season

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - JANUARY 05: Amari Cooper #19 of the Dallas Cowboys runs the ball after a catch against the Seattle Seahawks in the second half during the Wild Card Round at AT&T Stadium on January 05, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Wild Card Round - Seattle Seahawks v Dallas Cowboys | Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Amari Cooper has been a fantasy-relevant wide receiver since being drafted by the Oakland Raiders in 2015, but he's never quite made the leap into the top tier at the position.

In PPR leagues, his best fantasy football finish so far was WR14 in 2016, and he quickly took a downturn with a career-worst finish of WR36 in 2017. However, 2018 was a tale of two seasons for Cooper. He had a rough start to the year in Oakland, but things really picked up after he was traded to the Dallas Cowboys.

His splits last year were seriously dramatic. In Oakland he converted an average of 5.2 targets into only 9.5 fantasy points per game. That wouldn't even have ranked him in the top 50 at the position over the entire season. Across nine games in Dallas he was up to 8.4 targets and 18.1 fantasy points per game, which would have put him 11th.

That increase in volume came despite the fact that the Raiders threw on a higher percentage of their plays than the Cowboys did. Cooper's market share of team targets nearly doubled from only 12.1 percent to start the season in Oakland to 24.1 percent in Dallas.

Unsurprisingly, his efficiency also spiked when he left the struggling Raiders. He improved from 9.0 yards per target in Oakland to 9.5 in Dallas. That's part of the benefit of going from a QB that finished 21st in adjusted yards per attempt in Derek Carr to one that finished 14th in Dak Prescott.

Cooper's average draft position (ADP) of WR13 could prove to be undervaluing him for 2019 as he heads into his first full season with the Cowboys.

His impressive 2018 numbers in Dallas were put up while he was trying to learn a new offensive system and build chemistry with Dak Prescott on the fly. He's now proven himself in the offense and has had an offseason to get more comfortable in the system, and he has the upside to finish as one of the top WRs in 2019 fantasy football.

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Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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