We all knew coming into 2019 that the Rams’ three-headed receiving corps could prove to be a headache from time-to-time. Honestly, we kind of watched this exact scenario play out every week prior to Cooper Kupp’s season-ending knee injury last year. To be frank about the matter, there’s just only so much volume to go around and, every now and again, someone’s going to be left out in the cold. Last weekend in a contest against the Cardinals, that person was most certainly Brandin Cooks. However, as we attempt to prorate what we learned last Sunday into information that can be used in Week 14, how much of Cooks poor performance was a sign of things to come and how much was a product of a specific matchup?
In a script that saw Jared Goff throw for an impressive 424 yards, Cooks was held to a paltry 24 receiving yards on a pair of receptions. Still, that felt like an intentional decision made by Sean McVay. Though Patrick Peterson isn’t having all that sterling of a season, why even risk throwing it in his direction? Why not sacrifice Cooks’ production and simply target Robert Woods 18 times in a better individual matchup? Heck, with Arizona funnelling a whopping 24% of all opponent pass attempts towards tight ends, why not let Tyler Higbee go off for 107 yards and a touchdown? I mean, how often do you play a team that’s surrendering a league-worst 9.4 yards per target to TEs? Los Angeles appeared to simply play the hand they were dealt in Week 13. I don’t think it was a reflection of Cooks’ abilities.
Fantasy Football Analysis, Los Angeles Rams WRs Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp and Brandin Cooks
The Rams average 275.4 passing yards per contest. That’s the fifth-highest mark in all of football. There’s usually enough volume to sustain all three of Woods, Kupp and Cooks as at least fringe Top-30 options at their position, but it makes things difficult when a random high-target Higbee performance pops up out of the blue. Considering Cooks is still producing more yards per target (9.8) and yards per reception (14.8) than his teammates, I’m still choosing to view he and Woods as high-end WR3 types each and every week. Kupp, who is targeted on a massive 25% of his routes, remains the obvious No. 1 option in this passing attack.
Start Woods. Start Kupp. Start Cooks.