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Patriots cornerback Jonathan Jones isn’t the only NFL player who has taken up aviation as a part-time hobby.
Cowboys receiver Brandin Cooks, who played for the Patriots in 2017, also has a pilot’s license. The NFL recently tweeted a video of Cooks flying Cowboys teammates Micah Parsons and Stephon Gilmore in a Cirrus 22 Turbo airplane.
“They need to let me do the flyover for the National Anthem,” the video’s caption read.
This did not go over well with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who was less than thrilled to see the edge rusher and cornerback riding with a part-time pilot.
“One thing I want to do is chastise Cooks for getting in that airplane with the best part of the team and flying up there with him,’’ Jones said told the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram. “I was glad I didn’t know that was going on. I would have to tell him part-time pilots, in my mind, are not the way to go.’’
According to Cooks, there was also a veteran pilot on board. The Star-Telegram reports that Cooks has logged more than 250 hours in the air after receiving his pilot’s license two years ago.
However, Cooks said he understood Jones’s concern.
“I haven’t seen him yet, but if I was him, I’d feel the same way,’’ Cooks said. “He’s got a lot of money invested in the guys in that plane.’’
Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy was less worried about the flight than Jones was. He laughed about it, according to the Star-Telegram.
“Obviously, I don’t know about taking the whole crew up with you,” McCarthy said. “But I mean, Brandin’s someone you definitely would trust. You can see they obviously trust him in the short time he’s been here.”
Cooks has topped 1,000 yards receiving in six of the nine seasons he’s spent in the NFL, including his lone season with the Patriots in 2017. Gilmore was a member of the Patriots Super Bowl LIII championship team. Parsons finished seventh in the NFL in sacks last season.
That’s a lot of football talent onboard a small plane.
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