Training camp is the time for the Oakland Raiders as well as the rest of the NFL to sharpen up. Veterans work out the kinks, rookies get ready for the NFL and the team can build that chemistry. But the Raiders have half of their class injured and Amari Cooper has missed his fifth straight practice.
Multiple reports cite something in his left leg as the reason why he hasn’t practiced in so long. So Raider Nation shouldn’t expect Cooper to be in the lineup against the Arizona Cardinals Saturday. Obviously, Saturday’s game is just a preseason affair and he would not have played much anyway.
So not many are worried about Cooper missing the last five practices and the first preseason game. Afterall, it is training camp with double days and little nicks often happen with players. Perhaps it’s a little nick and the Raiders are being extra cautious about such an important player.
But Cooper has faded down the stretch of his first two seasons while dealing with injuries. So one can’t help but wonder if this is something that could lead to bigger issues as the season goes on. Cooper went to camp this year on swole status after bulking up this past offseason to avoid injuries.
He probably figured the extra muscle would give him the cushion he needs to get through a whole season. But that’s not always the way it works out for an athlete that puts extra muscle on. Sometimes, that bulk causes the athlete to get injured more as those big muscles have to fire fast.