05 February, 2018
The Washington Redskins are considering placing their franchise tag on Kirk Cousins in a bid to trade him and recoup some of the money they are sending to the Kansas City Chiefs for fellow quarterback Alex Smith, ESPN reported Sunday. If Washington does not place the franchise tag on Cousins, he will likely draw interest from the Broncos, Jets, Cardinals and others in free agency. The thinking: Instead of letting Cousins walk for nothing more than a compensatory pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, Washington can get much more than that for what many team's consider a legit franchise quarterback.
However, there are rumblings that the Redskins could still place the franchise tag on Cousins, doing so for the third consecutive year. After everything that the team has put him through the past few seasons, Cousins, knowing that he will get paid eventually could decide to stick it to the Redskins by sitting on the deal for a couple of months, which would put a $34.5 million grip on Washington's salary cap. Everyone essentially received their answer when the Redskins made the move to acquire Smith, but Washington could still get something for Cousins while also regaining some of the compensation it sent to the Chiefs for Smith.
Except the Redskins, who clearly are ready to move on from Cousins as evidenced by a. their refusal to give him a long-term deal commensurate with his talents, and b. the decision to trade for Smith, may not be interested in a clean break. Every player looks forward to free agency. Placing the tag on Cousins would prohibit him from becoming a true free agent, removing his ability to choose who he plays for next. This means the Redskins are getting their quarterback of the future, as Smith has also signed an extension with the team. Teams can start handing out franchise tags on February 20. The fourth-round pick from Michigan State was a Pro Bowler in 2016 and has thrown for at least 4,000 yards in each of his three seasons as the starter in Washington. But Cousins said he was glad to hear several players lobby their teams for him, from Denver linebacker Von Miller to Cleveland left tackle Joe Thomas.
Gronk sits, Brady restricted as Patriots return to observe
Offensive lineman LaAdrian Waddle and running back Mike Gillislee missed part of practice for the third day in a row. With the Super Bowl eight days away, this is an encouraging sign for Gronkowski and the entire New England offense.
Death to the franchise tag! I'm fully aware he hasn't had much of a running game and his weaponry dropped off this season.
There are other factors at play in the Cousins sweepstakes.
"The team's gotta do what's best for them", Cousins told TMZ Sports on Thursday at the EA Sports Madden Bowl. Cousins told USA Today he spoke to owner Dan Snyder and coach Jay Gruden, but not team president Bruce Allen.