Cowboys star Amari Cooper likens playing with COVID-19 to Michael Jordan’s Flu Game
Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper returned to the field on Thursday after having been sidelined the previous two games following a positive COVID-19 test. In the aftermath of Dallas’ win over the Saints, Cooper claimed that he thinks he could have played despite the virus, even going as far as to liken the situation to Michael Jordan’s famous Flu Game, per ProFootballTalk.
“It was tough,” Cooper said to reporters after the game. “[Michael] Jordan played with the flu. That’s how I looked at it. It was a restriction of not being able to play with what I had. It was tough, knowing that I could physically gone out there and played, but the restrictions didn’t allow me to do so.”
Comparing his situation to that of Jordan’s is pretty bold from the Cowboys wideout. After all, Cooper featured on just 34% of Dallas’ offensive snaps, making just two catches for 41 yards. It was his quietest performance of the season, and a far cry from the 38 points MJ dropped in his renowned Flu Game. While Cooper felt he could have played while battling COVID, the Cowboys’ game plan seemed to suggest otherwise.
Cooper was unable to return for the previous two games because of the league’s protocol which requires unvaccinated players to be away from the team facility for at least 10 days following a positive test. Because of the Cowboys’ Thanksgiving matchup last week, Cooper didn’t have enough time to return to action.
This season, Cooper has featured in 10 games. He has 46 receptions, 624 receiving yards, and five touchdowns, but hasn’t scored in any of his past three games.