Former Florida Gators wide receiver Riley Cooper agreed to a five-year, $25 million contract with the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday, locking up the team’s second-leading pass catcher before he was eligible to hit free agency.
Cooper, who was paid $2.11 million over the four years of his rookie deal, will earn $10 million guaranteed with the fifth year serving as a team option.
After reeling in 46 receptions for 680 yards and four scores during his first three NFL seasons, Cooper bested all those numbers in 2013 alone with 47 catches for 835 yards and eight touchdowns.
He was heavily featured in head coach Chip Kelly’s high-octane offense and was obviously an important piece that Philadelphia was worried about losing.
Just seven months ago, Cooper was embroiled in controversy when a video of him yelling an obscene racial slur at a bouncer who was working at a Kenny Chesney concert leaked online. He took full responsibility and apologized profusely but had the incident hanging over him throughout the offseason.
Thanks to support from his teammates, Cooper was able to overcome the obstacle and have a career year. Many believed the incident would keep another team from bringing him into their locker room, but the Eagles obviously believed there was enough interest to pay Cooper, the No. 159 overall pick in the fifth round of the 2010 NFL Draft, well in order to keep him from reaching free agency.
Photo Credit: Joe Camporeale, USA TODAY Sports