Brandin Cooks has played for four teams in seven NFL seasons since being selected in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft out of Oregon State.
But the Houston Texans wide receiver has made one thing clear: He’s been traded for the last time.
“As far as the team, they could trade me for draft capital, I’d caution them to think twice because quite frankly I’m not going to accept any more trades,” Cooks said. “For me, if you want me off your team, you’re just going to have to let me walk and choose my destination...
Prior to arriving in Houston, Cooks was drafted by the New Orleans Saints, traded to New England Patriots, and then traded by the Los Angeles Rams to the Texans in exchange for a second-round pick in April. But despite being shipped off three times in recent years, the 27-year-old has been productive.
In his first season with the Texans, Cooks has 70 catches for 984 yards and four touchdowns. If he can record just 16 yards in Houston’s season finale vs. the Tennessee Titans on Sunday, Cooks would become the second receiver in NFL history to record at least 1,000 receiving yards in a season with four different teams, per ESPN Stats & Information.
The former Oregon State standout still has three years remaining on his five-year, $81 million contract extension signed in July 2018, but that amount isn’t guaranteed. He’s due to make a $12 million base in 2021 and 2022, and approximately $12.5 million in 2023.
Cook, however, sees greatness brewing between himself and star QB Deshaun Watson, and he hopes the two will continue to “grow” in Houston.
"For me, 4 is a special player, and I would love to continue to grow with him," Cooks said of Watson. "When it comes to playing here and playing with Deshaun, I would love to continue that growth. But that's out of my hands. Those are decisions that I don't make. I hope that the team sees the growth that we've been having and continues to show that commitment and growth over the years."
Houston is 4-11 with one game remaining in the regular season and doesn’t own a single first-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, which means the talented wideout could be on the trade block once again.
Cooks is trying to get ahead of such talk by making his intentions clear, but it’s possible the Texans incoming general manager will make the decision for him. Cooks’ contract does not have a no-trade clause in it.