On Thursday afternoon, the Detroit Lions secondary was picked apart by Chicago Bears backup quarterback Chase Daniel. On Thursday evening, the Lions were reportedly awarded a Bears cornerback that had been waived just so that Daniel had an emergency backup in case he suffered an injury.
Cornerback Marcus Cooper, who had been a healthy scratch for most of the year, was claimed by the Lions, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport:
Cooper is five-year veteran with 28 starts to his name. Drafted in the seventh round by the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013, Cooper got off to a hot start. In his rookie year, he tallied a whopping 18 passes defended and three interceptions. His career quickly cooled off, but it went through a minor resurgence in 2016 after he was traded to the Cardinals. That year, he tallied 69 tackles, 11 passes defended and four interceptions, and he was even named a Pro Bowl alternate.
The next year he hit free agency and ended up inking a three-year, $16 million deal with the Bears. However, injury and poor performance caused him to quickly slide out of a starting role in Chicago, and he has barely played at all this season.
At 6-foot-2, 197 pounds, Cooper is a big physical cornerback that has some speed, too (4.45 40-yard dash). The Lions have obviously struggled to defend the pass all year, and just about everyone in the secondary has been to blame at this point.
While the Lions haven’t made the announcement of the transaction yet, one has to wonder who will be the player Detroit cuts to make room for Cooper. One possible choice is former second-round pick Teez Tabor, who was a healthy scratch on Thursday for the Bears.