Cowboys' Jerry Jones 'Hopeful' Amari Cooper Recovers from Rib Injury Before Week 3

Doric SamSeptember 21, 2021

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper (19) during an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, in Inglewood, Calif. (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)
AP Photo/Kyusung Gong

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper's status for Monday night's home opener against the Philadelphia Eagles is uncertain after he suffered bruised ribs in Sunday's win over the Los Angeles Chargers.

During an appearance on 105.3 The Fan on Tuesday, Cowboys president and general manager Jerry Jones said he didn't have an update on Cooper's injury, but he's optimistic that he can heal for a key game against a division rival.

"I don’t know today," Jones said when asked about Cooper's status. "I’m hopeful those ribs can get comfortable enough to play (Monday night)."

Cooper had three catches for 24 yards Sunday before exiting the game on the Cowboys' final drive. He has the benefit of an extra day of rest, as Dallas is scheduled to hold a walkthrough Wednesday, with the team's first normal practice set for Thursday.

Cooper exploded in the season-opening loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, hauling in 13 receptions for 139 yards and two touchdowns.

With receiver Michael Gallup already on injured reserve with a calf setback, the Cowboys need Cooper against a strong Eagles defense. Philadelphia ranks third in the NFL in passing defense (162.5 yards per game) and fourth in total defense (283.0 yards per game).

Emerging second-year star CeeDee Lamb leads Dallas with 185 receiving yards, with Cooper right behind him at 163. Lamb has been targeted 24 times through two games, and Cooper has 22 targets. No other Cowboy has more than 10 targets or 100 receiving yards.

Since being traded to Dallas midway through the 2018 season, Cooper has regained the form that saw him earn back-to-back Pro Bowl selections in his first two pro campaigns. He's coming off 1,000-yard seasons in 2019 and 2020, playing in all 16 games in each year.

The Cowboys have been bitten by the injury bug elsewhere. Starting defensive tackle Carlos Watkins (knee) and defensive end Dorance Armstrong (ankle) also suffered injuries Sunday. Two-time Pro Bowl edge-rusher DeMarcus Lawrence was moved to injured reserve last week after suffering a fracture in his foot in practice.