Cooper Rush

Cooper Rush
refer to caption
Rush in training camp with the Cowboys in 2019
No. 10 – Dallas Cowboys
Personal information
Born: (1993-11-21) November 21, 1993 (age 27)
Charlotte, Michigan
Height:6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight:225 lb (102 kg)
Career information
High school:Lansing Catholic
(Lansing, Michigan)
College:Central Michigan
Career history
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Roster status:Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2021
Passing completions:25
Passing attempts:43
Completion percentage:58.1
Passing yards:327
Passer rating:88.0
Player stats at · PFR

Cooper Rush (born November 21, 1993) is an American football quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Central Michigan University, and was signed by the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent in 2017.

Early years

Rush is from Charlotte, Michigan, and is the son of Frances Rush and Matthew Rush. He attended Lansing Catholic High School in Lansing, Michigan, with an enrollment of just over 500 students, where he became a three-year starter at quarterback for the football team.[1] He also practiced basketball and baseball (until his freshman year).

In 2010 and 2011, he led his team to back-to-back undefeated regular seasons. In 2011, he led his team to the state runner-up title. In the Division 5 regional championship game against Dowagiac Union High School, he set Michigan state records with 5 touchdown passes in one quarter and 8 for the game. The team would end up losing in the finals against Powers Catholic High School 26–56, even though he registered 300 passing yards and 3 touchdowns.

As a senior he received All-State, Associated Press’ Michigan Division 5/6 Player of the Year and ESPN’s Michigan Gatorade Player of the Year honors.

He finished his high school career throwing for 7,248 passing yards (455-for-734, 62 percent), 80 passing touchdowns, 1,438 rushing yards and 27 rushing touchdowns.[2]

College career

Rush accepted his only football scholarship offer, which came from Central Michigan University, where he became a four-year starter at quarterback.

In his redshirt season, he was named the school’s Scout Team Player of the Year. As a freshman, although he began the season as the third-string quarterback, he was named the starter by the third game, after Cody Kater was injured (collarbone fracture) and his backup Alex Niznak couldn't move the offense against the University of New Hampshire. In that contest he came in the second quarter and helped engineer a 24–21 come from behind victory, where he tallied 326 passing yards and 3 touchdowns, tying the school record for the longest in history (97 yards).[3] He would never relinquish the position or miss a start after the game.

As a sophomore, he played in the 2014 Bahamas Bowl against Western Kentucky. By the middle of the third quarter, his team had fallen behind 49–14, but scored 4 unanswered touchdowns and were down by only 7 points near the end of the fourth quarter. With one second remaining on the contest, Central Michigan had the ball on their own 25 yard line. The would be final play started with a 45-yard Hail Mary pass from Rush to wide receiver Jesse Kroll. As Kroll was being tackled he lateraled the ball to teammate Deon Butler, who ran 20 yards before lateraling to Courtney Williams. With no space to run, Williams made a quick third lateral pass to leading receiver Titus Davis who ran the final 13 yards, scoring a touchdown that would have tied the game with a kicked extra point and sent the game into overtime, but instead Central Michigan attempted a two-point conversion for the win, which was unsuccessful.[4][5] Had the try succeeded, it would have marked the largest comeback in bowl history and tied the largest comeback in any Division I game. His seven touchdown passes set an all-time record for all bowl games.[6]

His best season came as a junior in 2015, through the first 13 games he had 3,703 passing yards, which was a new school single-season record.[7] He completed 66.3 percent of his passes for 3,848 total passing yards, 25 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions.[8]

As a senior, his production dropped to 3,540 passing yards, 23 touchdowns, but with 16 interceptions and a low 59.8 completion percentage.[9] Against Oklahoma State University, the game sparked controversy after the officials made an incorrect call that would eventually give Central Michigan the win. Oklahoma State threw the ball away to end the game and received a penalty for intentional grounding. Under college football rules, the game would have ended and Oklahoma State would have won the game. However, the officials gave Central Michigan an untimed down, and Rush threw a 51-yard Hail Mary pass to wide receiver Jesse Kroll, who made a lateral to fellow receiver Corey Willis at the 12-yard line, running for a touchdown with no time remaining for a 30–27 win.[10][11] The team lost 55–10 to Tulsa in the 2016 Miami Beach Bowl at the end of the season.[12]

He finished his college career with 49 straight starts, 12,894 passing yards (12 yards short of Dan LeFevour school and conference record) and 90 touchdowns.[13]

College statistics

Season GP Passing
Comp Att Pct Yards TD Int QBR
2013 11 177 312 56.7 2,349 15 15 126.2
2014 13 243 382 63.6 3,149 27 13 149.4
2015 13 324 489 66.3 3,853 25 11 144.8
2016 13 278 465 59.8 3,540 23 16 133.2
Career 50 1,022 1,648 62 12,891 90 55 139.1

Professional career

Coming out of Central Michigan, Rush was projected by the majority of NFL draft experts and analysts to be a seventh round pick or a priority undrafted free agent. On December 6, 2016, it was announced that Rush had accepted his invitation to the East–West Shrine Game. On January 21, 2017, Rush performed in the East–West Shrine Game for the East and completed 11 of 17 pass attempts for 97 yards in a 10–3 loss to the West.

He received an invitation to the NFL combine and performed almost all of the required drills except for the bench press. He had an underwhelming lackluster performance and had some of the lowest marks at the combine.[14] On March 20, 2017, Rush participated at Central Michigan's pro day and chose to attempt the vertical jump, broad jump, short shuttle, and three-cone drill once again. He gave a slower time in the three-cone drill (7.28), but was able to have better results in the vertical (30"), broad (8'11"), and short shuttle (4.46). Rush was ranked the 14th best quarterback prospect in the draft by[15]

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight Arm length Hand size 40-yard dash 10-yard split 20-yard split 20-yard shuttle Three-cone drill Vertical jump Broad jump
6 ft 2+58 in
(1.90 m)
228 lb
(103 kg)
32+38 in
(0.82 m)
9+18 in
(0.23 m)
4.93 s 1.72 s 2.89 s 4.47 s 7.23 s 27 in
(0.69 m)
8 ft 9 in
(2.67 m)
All values from NFL Combine[16]

Dallas Cowboys


Rush was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Dallas Cowboys after the 2017 NFL Draft on May 12.[17] As a rookie, he initially competed with Zac Dysert in training camp for the job as the third-string quarterback. After Dysert suffered a herniated disc, the Cowboys signed Luke McCown to replace him on the roster.[18]

Following multiple productive preseason performances in the Hall of Fame Game and the next two contests, he began to share second-team reps in practice with backup quarterback Kellen Moore before the preseason game against the Oakland Raiders. During the contest, he was given most of the time with the second-team offense and completed 12 of his 13 attempts for 115-yards and two touchdowns in a comeback 24–20 victory. He finished the preseason with a total of 38 pass completions out of 51 attempts, 398 passing yards, and six touchdown passes with no interceptions.[19] Head coach Jason Garrett named Rush the Cowboys' third quarterback on their depth chart, behind Dak Prescott and Moore.[20] Rush did not dress for the first five games and was a healthy scratch.

Rush was promoted to second-string for the sixth game of the season, with Moore being released and signed to the Cowboy's practice squad.[21][22] In Week 7, in the 40–10 victory over the San Francisco 49ers, he appeared late in the game in relief of Prescott. He was 1-of-3 passing for 2 yards and had 2 rushes for 13 yards in his NFL debut.[23]


In 2018, he was the backup at quarterback from the start of organized team activities, as he never received any strong competition from rookie Mike White. He only played in the sixth game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, closing out a 40–7 win in the fourth quarter, where he only handed the ball to the running backs.


In 2019, he wasn't challenged for the backup quarterback role, so the Cowboys decided to keep only 2 quarterbacks on the roster, releasing White at the end of the preseason. He only played in the season opener against the New York Giants and in the fourteenth game against the Los Angeles Rams. He did not have any pass attempts while closing out the two wins in the fourth quarter.


On March 18, 2020, Rush re-signed with the Cowboys on a one-year restricted free agent tender.[24] On May 4, Rush was waived by the Cowboys after the team signed former Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton.[25]

New York Giants

On May 5, 2020, Rush was claimed off waivers by the New York Giants, reuniting with offensive coordinator Jason Garrett, who was his head coach with the Cowboys.[26] On September 5, 2020, he was waived and signed to the practice squad the next day.[27][28] On September 29, 2020, Rush was released from the Giants practice squad to make room for another former Cowboys quarterback (Clayton Thorson).[29]

Dallas Cowboys (second stint)

On October 31, 2020, Rush was signed to the Dallas Cowboys' practice squad, to provide depth after starter Dak Prescott suffered a season-ending ankle injury.[30] He was elevated to the active roster on November 7 for the team's week 9 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, and reverted to the practice squad after the game.[31] He signed a reserve/future contract with the Cowboys on January 4, 2021.[32] He beat out Garrett Gilbert and Ben DiNucci to be the backup QB for Dallas in the 2021 NFL season.

Rush was named the starter for the Cowboys Week 8 game against the Minnesota Vikings after Prescott was out with a calf injury. It was Rush's first start since entering the NFL.[33] He passed for 325 yards, 2 touchdowns, and an interception, and led a comeback drive that he ended by throwing a touchdown to Amari Cooper in the final minute of a 20-16 Dallas victory.[34]

NFL career statistics

NFL career statistics
Year Team Games Passing Rushing Fumbles
GP GS Cmp Att Pct Yds Avg Lng TD Int Rtg Att Yds Avg Lng TD Fum Lost
2017 DAL 2 0 1 3 33.3 2 0.7 2 0 0 42.4 2 13 6.5 15 0 0 0
2018 DAL 0 0 DNP
2019 DAL 0 0
2020 DAL 0 0
2021 DAL 3 1 27 43 62.8 342 8.0 73 2 1 93.4 4 -4 -1.0 2 0 1 1
Career 5 1 28 46 60.9 344 7.5 75 2 1 89.4 6 9 0.7 15 0 1 1

Personal life

Rush is married to Lauryn Rush. They have one daughter together.[35]


  1. ^ Calloway, Brian. "Lansing Catholic grad Cooper Rush heads to Cowboys". Lansing State Journal. Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  2. ^ "Cooper Rush college statistics". Retrieved September 2, 2017.
  3. ^ "New Hampshire at Central Michigan Box Score, September 7, 2013". College Football at Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  4. ^ "Popeyes Bahamas Bowl – Central Michigan vs Western Kentucky Box Score, December 24, 2014". College Football at Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  5. ^ Associated Press (December 24, 2015). "Central Michigan Scores Miracle, Last-Second Touchdown, Only to Miss 2-Point Conversion and Fall to Western Kentucky, 49–48, in Bahamas Bowl", New York Daily News. Retrieved December 25, 2014.
  6. ^ "VIDEO: Central Michigan scores miracle, last-second touchdown, only to miss 2-point conversion and fall to Western Kentucky, 49–48, in Bahamas Bowl". Retrieved September 2, 2017.
  7. ^ "Cooper Rush". Retrieved November 9, 2016.
  8. ^ "Cooper Rush 2015 Game Log". College Football at Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  9. ^ "Cooper Rush 2016 Game Log". College Football at Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  10. ^ "Central Michigan at Oklahoma State Box Score, September 10, 2016". College Football at Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  11. ^ "Crews at controversial Central Michigan-Oklahoma State game suspended". Retrieved September 2, 2017.
  12. ^ "Miami Beach Bowl – Central Michigan vs Tulsa Box Score, December 19, 2016". College Football at Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  13. ^ "Cooper Rush College Stats". College Football at Retrieved January 28, 2018.
  14. ^ Peter Wallner (March 6, 2017). "Cooper Rush's showing at NFL Combine doesn't match agent's prediction". Retrieved October 27, 2017.[permanent dead link]
  15. ^ "Cooper Rush, DS #14 QB, Central Michigan". Retrieved October 27, 2017.
  16. ^ "NFL Draft Profile: Cooper Rush". Retrieved October 27, 2017.
  17. ^ Phillips, Rob (May 21, 2017). "Cowboys Officially Sign 13 Rookie Free Agents Leading Into Rookie Minicamp". Retrieved May 21, 2017.
  18. ^ Tyler Harris (July 31, 2017). "Dallas Cowboys: My observations from training camp". Retrieved October 27, 2017.
  19. ^ "Dallas Cowboys cut Kellen Moore, make Cooper Rush No. 2 QB for now". Retrieved September 2, 2017.
  20. ^ "Official Cowboys depth chart for Week 1 vs. Giants: Kellen Moore is the No. 2 QB". Retrieved October 28, 2017.
  21. ^ Josh Slagter (October 26, 2017). "Kellen Moore's release means Cooper Rush officially Cowboys' No. 2 QB'". Retrieved October 28, 2017.[permanent dead link]
  22. ^ "Cowboys-49ers Inactives: Moore sits, Prescott back-up is Cooper Rush". Archived from the original on October 28, 2017. Retrieved October 28, 2017.| author=K.D. Drummond| date=October 22, 2017}
  23. ^ "Dallas Cowboys at San Francisco 49ers – October 22nd, 2017". Retrieved November 5, 2017.
  24. ^ "Cowboys' Cooper Rush: Signs RFA tender". March 18, 2020. Retrieved May 4, 2020.
  25. ^ Helman, David (May 4, 2020). "Cowboys Release QB Cooper Rush". Retrieved May 4, 2020.
  26. ^ Eisen, Michael (May 5, 2020). "Giants claim QB Cooper Rush from Dallas Cowboys". Retrieved May 5, 2020.
  27. ^ Eisen, Michael (September 5, 2020). "New York Giants announce 53-man roster".
  28. ^ Eisen, Michael (September 6, 2020). "Giants sign 14 to practice squad; 2 spots open".
  29. ^ "RB Alfred Morris and QB Clayton Thorson added to practice squad; DB Madre Harper intends to sign Thursday". Retrieved September 30, 2020.
  30. ^ @DallasCowboysPR (October 30, 2020). "The @dallascowboys signed QB Cooper Rush (Central Michigan) to the practice squad on Friday" (Tweet). Retrieved November 12, 2020 – via Twitter.
  31. ^ "Nov. 7 Updates". November 7, 2020. Retrieved December 9, 2020.
  32. ^ "Jan. 4 Updates". January 4, 2021. Retrieved February 15, 2021.
  33. ^ "Dak Prescott inactive; Cooper Rush will start for Cowboys vs. Vikings". Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  34. ^ Patra, Kevin (November 1, 2021). "Cooper Rush on leading Cowboys to prime-time win over Vikings: 'Just as good as the dream'". Archived from the original on November 5, 2021. Retrieved November 7, 2021.
  35. ^ "laurynn.rush". Instagram. Retrieved November 1, 2021.

External links


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