WR Brandin Cooks - Los Angeles Rams
|5-10, 189||Born: 9-25-1993||College: Oregon State||Drafted: Round 1, pick 2014|
Week 21: vs New England Patriots
FBG says: Tough matchup. Jared Goff has been up and down this season but was great when he needed to be against the Saints in the championship. Goff over his last seven games has thrown for 216 yards or less in five of those games and has thrown for under 60% completion percentage in four of those games. The Rams offense has primarily evolved into a run-first offense setting up the play-action pass and is an offense that is designed to play with the lead. The struggles for the Rams in the passing game have been primarily driven by the lack of consistent options outside of Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods. The Rams desperately miss Todd Gurley's elusiveness out of the backfield if nothing more than to keep the defense honest with drawing safety attention over to the running back who is dangerous in open space. Josh Reynolds has been a deep threat for the Rams, but the second-year player has struggled with consistency for the Rams this season. This is a unit that will be critical in the outcome of this game as they need to get back to the high potent offense that we saw earlier this season. The Patriots secondary has been one that is a better unit than the stats show as they have been a victim of garbage time production in several games this season. This is a unit that has allowed the fifth-most attempts allowed, but have the fifth-fewest yards per attempt this season indicating that while teams throw a lot against them on a per-yard basis they are not efficient. From a talent standpoint, this is a team that is extremely dangerous as they primarily play a 4-1-6 Dime defense. This is a veteran unit led by Stephon Gilmore who has emerged as one of the top corners in the league and plays alongside the McCourty twins and Patrick Chung who have played a significant role in undrafted rookie J.C. Jackson's development this season. If there is a weakness on this defense, it would be how the inexperienced Jackson performs in the Super Bowl and he'll mostly matchup against Josh Reynolds, but will see some Brandin Cooks in this game.
Recent Stats and Projections
Weekly Performance vs WR 1, WR 12, WR 24, WR 36
Brandin Cooks's percentile rank in each category, among WR with more than 50 fantasy points.
Recent Game Summaries
2018 Week 20 vs NO (8 / 7 / 107 / 0 rec)
He had the most important plays of in the passing for the Rams. He converted on a Deep Curl along the right sideline on 3rd and 10 during the Rams' two-minute drill, when the Rams had been 1-5 on third down at that point (with no conversions through the air). He got free access off the line of scrimmage. The Rams sent a blitz, and Eli Apple gave Cooks a ton of space to easily run a Curl way past the sticks for an easy pitch and catch. On the next play he lined up to the left, easily beat PJ Williams press coverage attempt, and caught an over-the-shoulder fade to bring the ball to the Saints' 6-yard line.
2018 Week 19 vs DAL (6 / 4 / 65 / 0 rec, 1 / 5 / 0 rush)
Cooks had two potential touchdown passes in the redzone wiped out on the same drive. The first was his fault, as he bobbled the ball while coming in contact with the ground. Two plays later (on 3rd and goal), he adjusted well to an overthrown Goff ball, extending for a difficult catch. However, he was not able to make the catch in bounds, as the overthrow caused him to drift out of the endzone while coming down. He got loose for a 20 yard gain on the Rams' first drive of the third quarter. He lined up as the inside slot in trips, ran a Deep Out, and found a hole in the zone.
2018 Week 17 vs SF (9 / 5 / 62 / 2 rec)
Cooks caught Goff's opening pass for a short easy touchdown. In the second quarter, Jared Goff found him in a hole over the middle of the field after scrambling for a bit. He did a great job expanding with his quarterback and making himself clearly available. He broke a few tackles and picked up YAC for a 20+ yard gain. A few plays later, they hooked up again on a Play Action Screen pass. Cooks broke two tackles in the open field en route to an 18 yard catch and run touchdown.
2018 Week 16 vs ARI (3 / 3 / 35 / 0 rec, 3 / 27 / 0 rush)
The Rams didn't really take Cooks out the garage. He did have a big 3rd down reception for 18 yards on a Deep Curl, where he settled in a deep zone between Patrick Peterson and the safety to that side.
2018 Week 15 vs PHI (7 / 6 / 59 / 0 rec)
Cooks got very little deep action in this game, as Jared Goff continues to struggle in that area. He caught a bunch of crossers and screens. He did have one intermediate target in the Rams' two minute drill on a deep comeback, which he successfully caught and got out of bounds to stop the clock.
2018 Week 14 vs CHI (7 / 3 / 22 / 0 rec)
Cooks had seven targets but felt like than afterthought in the Rams' offensive letdown in Chicago. Cooks had two short receptions in the first half, but was invisible over the final 30 frustrating minutes for the Rams offense outside of an ugly drop in the closing minutes. Cooks has gone four games without a touchdown and his 13 total targets over the past two games mark the second-fewest over a multiple game span of the season. The Eagles' suspect secondary offers a bounce-back opportunity in Week 15.
2018 Week 13 vs DET (6 / 4 / 62 / 0 rec)
He was targeted on Goff's first two attempts. The first was a Deep Curl along the left sideline against off coverage. On the next play he started from the offensive's left, went in Jet Motion and converted it to a Wheel route up the right sideline. The linebacker to his side took a good angle, taking the Wheel away and forcing Goff to throw it where neither could make the catch. Woods fought through the contact, securing the ball at the high point, boxing the corner out, and coming down with the ball in bounds. He had back-to-back big gains on receptions running out-breaking routes from the slot in the two-minute drill before halftime.
2018 Week 11 vs KC (12 / 8 / 107 / 0 rec, 1 / 0 / 0 rush)
Cooks had a good day on the statline. He did most of his work catching shorter passes and gaining YAC. His statlines and usage have been very consistent game to game. He catches 6-8 balls for 90-150 yards, draws a PI downfield, and doesn't really get looks in the redzone.
2018 Week 10 vs SEA (12 / 10 / 100 / 0 rec, 1 / 9 / 1 rush)
Cooks really started getting involved on the third drive of the game. Exactly the types of routes you'd expect against Seattle's defense - comebacks along the perimeter and deep overs. Had a big completion on a Dig route on the Rams first drive of the fourth quarter. The drive ended with a field goal after a checkdown to Cooks came up 2 yards short of a first down inside in the 5. After the Rams kicked the field goal, the Seahawks fumbled on their ensuing drive, giving the Rams the ball at the 9 yard line. The Rams scored a touchdown in just one play - an easy Jet Sweep that Cooks ran in untouched.
2018 Week 9 vs NO (8 / 6 / 114 / 1 rec)
He won on a deep corner route on the second drive. He got rerouted on the press but a double move at the top of the route and his speed allowed him to separate from Marshon Lattimore in man coverage. He capped the drive off with a TD catch on an out route where the Rams got him matched up on a safety in man at the goal line. Cooks was the Rams' primary go-to man, especially once they got down big and had to start throwing to make up the deficit. He got the Rams final two pass attempts of the day - both incomplete as the Rams turned it over on downs. The first (3rd and 2) came on a straight vertical route. He actually beat the defensive back to the ball on a jump ball, but tried to one-hand the catch for some reason. It almost looked like he was defending it, even though the ball was in play for him. On the next play (4th and 2), he ran an out route. The ball hit him in the hands, but the defensive back was able to be physical with him through the catch, and he failed to make the reception. It was not a good two-play sequence for him with the game on the line.
2018 Week 8 vs GB (8 / 3 / 74 / 0 rec, 2 / 9 / 0 rush)
He didn't get a valuable target until 7:45 remaining in the 2nd quarter - a deep Post off of Play Action. He got open late in the route with his speed. The defensive back probably could have been called for pass interference, as he grabbed Cooks while the ball was in the air to catch back up to him and go up for a contested catch, but it was a no-call and incomplete pass. Goff went to him on a backside Dig off Play Action, but he could not come down with it through the defensive back's contact. Made a big catch on a back-shoulder on the Rams' only scoring drive of the first half. On the first 3rd down of the second half, the defensive back beat him up the ladder for a pass breakup. The Packer defensive backs were really challenging him, but he did make some big plays.
2018 Week 7 vs SF (5 / 4 / 64 / 1 rec, 1 / 7 / 0 rush)
Hit on a 20 yard Deep Crosser off play action towards the end of the 1st quarter. The route was pretty well covered and Cooks did a good job making the catch in a contested situation. His touchdown catch also came on a Deep Cross off play action from the 19 yard line. Again, the route was pretty well covered and Cooks did a fantastic job making a contested catch in the endzone. He was hit again for another 20+ yard Deep Cross late in the 3rd quarter.
2018 Week 6 vs DEN (6 / 2 / 53 / 0 rec)
Cooks continues living off deep/intermediate in breaking routes, especially off play action. Overall, it was a quiet day for him, as the Rams' deep/intermediate passing attack was stifled by Denver's defensive front. He caught a huge 45 yard Post on the first drive, and got two deep targets late in the third quarter, but both were well covered, and the ball was not in play for him.
2018 Week 5 vs SEA (0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
Cooks was injured on his only target of the day. He made a reception on a Deep Over route and was drilled after the catch by the safety coming downhill. He fumbled the ball before hitting the ground. He was ruled out for the rest of the game with a concussion.
2018 Week 4 vs MIN (8 / 7 / 116 / 1 rec, 1 / 10 / 0 rush)
Cooks has just missed on some huge plays so far this season, but it all came together against the Vikings. His first reception was a big time 3rd down conversion on the first drive. He lined up as the backside X opposite of Trips and ran a crosser into the area cleared out by the Trips. He was matched up vs Xavier Rhodes in man ñ Rhodes just could not keep up with him. The next 3rd down was the same formation and similar concept ñ this time Cooks kept the drive going by drawing a hold on Rhodes away from the play. Goff stayed to the trips side this time, but Rhodes so concerned with the 1-on-1 backside matchup, he grabbed and held Cooks on the inside breaking route. After having so many just-missed big plays in the first three weeks, he finally got behind the defense for a 47 yard touchdown just before the first half ended. He lined up as backside X receiver opposite of trips and just ran a post route downfield. The Rams got the look they wanted vs Quarters coverage ñ the safety to his side took the Dig route that came to him from the opposite Trips side and Cooks just blasted past Waynes for an easy touchdown on a Post that had no help over the top.
2018 Week 3 vs LAC (8 / 7 / 90 / 0 rec)
Cooks was a table setter for other some of the other Rams' touchdowns today. His first catch was a very impressive target in the redzone. He fought through press coverage at the LOS, got inside position, and ran a bang 8 making a difficult contested catch in the process (almost scored, down at the 1 for a short Gurley touchdown on the next play). He really opened it up and showed off his speed on a screen pass from the 28 yard line that he took all the way to the 3 which led to a short Robert Woods touchdown catch. He couldn't bring in a semi-contested 9 route that would have brought the ball to about the 3 yard line again, but did draw a penalty for illegal contact early in the route. The ball was dropped right into his arms, but the DB poked it out as the two were going to the ground. He drew yet another penalty on a downfield target in the third quarter - this time a defensive hold. For three games in a row, Cooks has extracted a ton of value for the Rams offense of penalties.
2018 Week 2 vs ARI (9 / 7 / 159 / 0 rec)
The Cardinals gave Cooks free access off the line of scrimmage all game, and he obliged by torching them in the intermediate pass game over the middle of the field. He would have had an even more productive day on a would-be easy TD to the flat was batted at the LOS by Chandler Jones. The Rams opened up their first series of the second half with a 57 yard bomb off of a Play Action Post that looked to have a coverage bust (nobody over the top of the defense). He made a really impressive contested catch on a Deep Over from the slot in the 4th quarter, high pointing the ball and bringing it down in traffic and getting to the ground to avoid the hit.
2018 Week 1 vs OAK (8 / 5 / 87 / 0 rec, 1 / 6 / 0 rush)
The Rams made a focus to get Cooks involved on a variety of targets in the pass game. He is clearly going to be more involved down-to-down than Sammy Watkins was, even though he is replacing Watkins as the X receiver in the Rams offense. His opening touch was a carry on Jet SweepHis first pass target came on a quick Curl on third down, and he dropped it vs physical coverage. He still does not particularly deal well with press/man coverage. He had another drop on a quick Out again where the defender was able to put his body on Cooks through the catch. His biggest contributions to the Rams offense came on drawing huge Pass Interference penalties down field - the Torrey Smith special. The fist one was a great outcome for the offense, but he did not much separation on the route. On his second PI drawn, he was allowed free access off the line of scrimmage and just ran past the CB and safety help. The ball was underthrown and he was interfered with as the DBs caught back up to him with the ball in the air. Once the team began leaning on Gurley, it opened things up for Cook more. He got more free access opportunities to get open on runaway inside breaking routes like Skinny Post and Deep Over.
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