Comparing Riley Cooper, Julian Edelman

February, 27, 2014
Feb 27
With news this morning that Philadelphia Eagles receiver Riley Cooper will sign a five-year, $25 million contract extension, two tweets were sent this way:
Here are some initial thoughts along these lines:

Cooper and Edelman are quite different in terms of playing style and physical makeup -- the 6-foot-3, 222-pound Cooper is more of a pure outside presence, while the 5-foot-10, 198-pound Edelman is more of an inside/outside threat with added value as a top punt returner. In interviews at the Super Bowl, Edelman noted he played 51 percent of his snaps outside in 2013.

Both are in their prime years (Cooper is 26, Edelman is 27), so that is one link, although Edelman's 2013 production trumps Cooper's. One question teams figure to ask is how much of Edelman's production is a result of the Patriots' system.

In many negotiations, teams and agents look for comparable players/markets and my feeling is that Cooper and Edelman aren't much of a match.

When I think of Edelman's projected market, it's players like Danny Amendola (5 years, $28 million, with $10 million in the first two years) and Wes Welker (2 years, $12 million) who are more closely aligned.

It just so happens that the markets for Cooper and Amendola/Welker are in the same neighborhood of each other from an average-per-year standpoint.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter



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