“He definitely talks more,” Carr said Wednesday. “Just our quick communications that we need to have to win games. I feel like all those kinds of things are growing. I think that that is the biggest difference. We know he’s talented. But those kinds of things are the biggest difference that I notice in the first two games.”
That translated into a big stat line for Cooper when he had 10 receptions for 116 yards in the 20-19 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday.
The former Alabama star will try to repeat those stat lines when he returns to his hometown of Miami when the Raiders (0-2) face the Dolphins (2-0) at Hard Rock Stadium at 10 a.m. PST Sunday.
Raiders coach Jon Gruden said he’s OK with Cooper’s quiet approach.
“Coop can do whatever he wants. I like him,” Gruden said. “I’ve had a chance to be around all kinds of different guys. The ones I like being around the most are guys that can do what he did on Sunday.”
Cooper, the man of few words, said his communication with Carr “has gotten better.”
For example: “We would talk during the course of practice and things that we’ve talked about would play out in the very same practice.”
Cooper had two 1,000-yard-plus seasons in 2015 and 16. Last season, he finished with 48 receptions for 680 yards but had a career-high seven touchdowns.
Gruden praised Cooper multiple times calling him a “great receiver.”
“He’s strong, he’s fast, he knows what he’s doing,” Gruden said. “He is quiet, but we are communicating better. We’re getting to know each other. I like where this relationship is heading.”
“Coop knows he can say anything to me,” he said. “You’re not going to hurt my feelings. Over time, we really worked on it. It was growing and growing but now we’re at a point that’s a good spot for communicating during the game.”
Cooper said he’s not the type to taunt opposing players or even be flamboyant. He’s just looking to continue to keep improving.
“I don’t think you have to be flamboyant to be a great player,” he said. “I just try to work on my craft. Try to be a complete player as possible, and I’ve just been focusing on being a consistent player.”