The discussion on whether the Redskins will trade Kirk Cousins has been the rumor that has dominated the NFL off-season.
Friday morning, Cousins signed his franchise tag that will pay him $24 million for the upcoming season. This marks the first time in the NFL’s calendar year that he is now eligible to be traded.
According to a report by ESPN NFL insider, Chris Mortensen, Cousins approached Redskins owner Dan Snyder about a potential trade. Snyder denied his request.
(Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)
With Cousins signing the franchise tender, the Redskins may go back and review all options.
This became more evident when the team relieved General Manager Scot McCloughan of his duties Thursday afternoon.
The new regime Snyder is about to bring in may have a different approach on how they handle the Cousins situation.
The Redskins should have no shortage of suitors if they make Cousins available. Teams like the 49ers, Jets, Texans and Broncos will all display interest if the Redskins are reasonable in an asking price. A sleeper team like the Jaguars may make a play as Tom Coughlin, in his opening press conference, noted they will review every option to upgrade the roster at each position.
Initial rumors reported the Redskins were seeking at least two first round picks in exchange for Cousins.
However, should the Redskins actually consider moving him without a viable solution in place to replace Cousins?
Lets take a quick look back at recent history.
Cousins has posted a 17-14-1 record while starting all 32 games the past two seasons including a division title on his resume. Cousins finished last season with 4,917 passing yards (3rd in the league) with 25 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He completed 67% of his passes.
The decade prior to the Cousins era was filled with mediocrity. The Redskins posted a 64-96 record (40%) and made three playoff appearances from the 2005 – 2014 season. The Redskins started eight different quarterbacks in that time frame.
If the Redskins were to trade Cousins, they will lose stability at the NFL’s most important position. They will again be searching for a franchise quarterback. A frightening place to be in the NFL.
Cousins may be shaky at times and may make a few mistakes along the way but has proved he can win games and put up big numbers. There are few elite quarterbacks in the league and Cousins has played himself into being a valuable, respected starter.
If the Redskins were wise, they’d extend Cousins long term, ditch the fiasco of the franchise tag and start building a roster to win with Cousins at the helm. With the Giants, Cowboys and Eagles all teams on the rise, the Redskins should keep Cousins and start allocating their timeto building a competitive roster to compete in the division.
*all statistics were used for profootballreference.com