The Dallas Cowboys changed the complexion of their offense and 2023 season by acquiring Brandin Cooks from the Texans over the weekend for a 2023 fifth-round pick and a 2024 sixth-round pick.
Before landing Cooks, the Cowboys were linked with a handful of receivers, including DeAndre Hopkins, Odell Beckham Jr., Jerry Jeudy, and even Adam Thielen, who was released by the Vikings after a 10-year run with the team.
Houston will eat $6 million of Cooks’ 2023 salary, and Dallas already restructured his contract to both give themselves more cap flexibility this offseason and make it more likely that Cooks is back with the team in 2024.
Though Hopkins, Beckham, and Jeudy are still available at the time of this writing, Thielen quickly found a new home with the new-look Panthers, who’ve added Miles Sanders, Hayden Hurst and the No. 1 overall pick.
The Cowboys were lightly connected to Thielen before he signed with Carolina, and Thielen himself confirmed during a Monday appearance on the “Pat McAfee Show” that Dallas reached out following his release.
Theilen had his reasons for picking the Panthers over the Cowboys. Well, one reason, actually: bringing a Super Bowl to Charlotte.
Adam Thielen picked the Panthers over the Cowboys because he believes Carolina can win a Super Bowl.
"“A lot of people are going to say I went there for the money and all that, but honestly at the end of the day, again, money was not a big deal,” Thielen said. “Of course, you want to get paid what you feel like you are worth. But at the end of the day, I wanted to go to a good situation for my family, for myself, and ultimately, that I felt like a place seriously had a chance at winning a Super Bowl. And I really do feel strongly with that.”"
We’re not going to pretend like the Cowboys are the Super Bowl favorites next year, or that they haven’t historically choked in the playoffs for the last 30 years, but Thielen is either lying through his teeth in the name of endearing himself to his new fans, or his ability to evaluate talent is broken beyond repair.
Thielen is awfully confident in a team that doesn’t currently have a starting quarterback and just traded away its No. 1 receiver in DJ Moore. The Panthers have nice pieces on defense and could win a lousy NFC South next season, but even that’s wishful thinking with a rookie signal caller running the offense.
No rookie QB has ever won, or even started, a Super Bowl.
Only four rookies prior to the 49ers’ Brock Purdy have started conference championship games, and nobody has done it since Mark Sanchez in 2010. Shaun King (Buccaneers, 2000), Ben Roethlisberger (Steelers, 2005), and Joe Flacco (Ravens, 2009), are the only other quarterbacks on this esteemed list.
No need to elaborate any further. The Panthers aren’t winning anything next season, and the Cowboys are better off with Brandin Cooks.