Released just before the start of the season but re-signed on Oct. 22 when Fred Davis was lost for the season with a torn Achillesâ€™ tendon, Cooley was unsure of what role he would have in his return. But he believed that he could play at a high level regardless.
Tight end Logan Paulsen, however, has taken over as the teamâ€™s primary receiver and has nine catches for 102 yards on 14 targets. Paulsen has played 135 of 140 Washingtonâ€™s combined snaps in their last two games.
Cooley has been used sparingly, playing 19 snaps in his first game back with the team and 10 snaps last Sunday. He was targeted only once in each of those games.
When he returned to the team, Cooley expressed confidence that he could play a key role and execute at a high level. But he admitted some uncertainty over how he would be used. Although he has yet to make any statistical contributions, Cooley isnâ€™t bothered by his role.
â€śHonestly, I didnâ€™t know what to expect. Iâ€™m happy to be a part of whatever I can do,â€ť Cooley said Tuesday. â€śHopefully, for me, it grows throughout the season. But itâ€™s a good bunch of guys to be around and a good locker room, and Iâ€™m happy to do whatever I can, and if thatâ€™s just being here and helping with the little details, then Iâ€™m happy to do that.â€ť
Additionally, Cooleyâ€™s coaches are happy with how he has played in his limited action.
â€śCooleyâ€™s done a solid job,â€ť Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan said. â€śHeâ€™s come in, weâ€™ve thrown him in a role. We did a lot of that stuff in camp, but we definitely added to it. Thatâ€™s why it was so important to bring a guy back like Cooley, who has experience and knows what weâ€™re doing, but also is smart enough to catch on quickly. Heâ€™s executed assignments, and heâ€™s done a solid job.â€ť
Asked if Cooley’s role would grow, Shanahan said that would all depend on game matchups.