NFL trade deadline: Brandin Cooks posts cryptic tweet after trade to Cowboys reportedly falls through

The NFL trade deadline came and went on Tuesday, and to the surprise of everyone, wide receiver Brandin Cooks was still a member of the Houston Texans. It appears Cooks, too, was surprised.

Minutes after the dust settled, the veteran posted a tweet low on clarity, but clearly indicative that he was not happy with ... someone.

Who could the target of Cooks's ire be? Texans general manager Nick Caserio? His agent? Someone completely uninvolved? There's really no way to know, unless Cooks wants to give us a follow-up. In the meantime, he is proving the cryptic wide receiver tweet stereotype true yet again.

Cooks was also out of practice on Tuesday due to "personal reasons."

It's not hard to see why Cooks might want to get out of Houston. He is a decent-to-good wide receiver on a very bad team, though he loses some sympathy considering he signed a two-year, $36 million contract extension seven months ago with the team he apparently now wants to leave. Maybe Cooks expected more of head coach Lovie Smith and quarterback Davis Mills, but the result has been a 1-5-1 record with little reason to expect a short-term turnaround.

So Cooks might have wanted a trade. He was reportedly very close to getting one.

Brandin Cooks trade with Cowboys reportedly fell through

Plenty of wide receiver-needy teams — the Green Bay Packers, the Baltimore Ravens, the New York Giants — had a use for Cooks, who has posted six 1,000-yard seasons since entering the league in 2014 and is on pace for 860 receiving yards this season.

But it was the Dallas Cowboys who were in on Cooks in the final minutes of the deadline, according to ESPN's Ed Werder. The Cowboys and Texans reportedly had talks go nowhere due to questions about draft pick compensation and Cooks's $18 million salary (and $26.6 million cap hit) next year.

It is worth wondering just how far talks really could have been if the two teams were still negotiating arguably the two biggest aspects of a Brandin Cooks trade, but that probably isn't much comfort to Cooks.

Cooks has plenty of experience changing teams in his nine-year NFL career, beginning with the New Orleans Saints before trades brought him to the New England Patriots, Los Angeles Rams and Texans. This would have been his first midseason trade, however.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - OCTOBER 23:  Wide receiver Brandin Cooks #13 of the Houston Texans warms up before a game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium on October 23, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images)
Does Brandin Cooks want out of the Texans seven months after signing an extension? (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images)