WASHINGTON — The Redskins and Kirk Cousins have decided not to reach a long-term agreement. As he tries to reprove himself in 2016, Washington will closely monitor his play. As will the rest of the league.
“It’s a question of how much you want to protect yourself going forward,” NFL Media’s Mike Garafolo, who reported Washington’s highest offer to Cousins — which came all the way back in February — was valued at $16 million per year, told Chris Russell and Danny Rouhier on 106.7 The Fan.
“Look, I get it. I’m not sitting here hammering the Redskins. I’m just kind of putting out there what they’re doing and everybody else can kind of open their interpretation to it,” he said.
“But I do know this: I’ve heard from other teams who say, ‘Boy, they are really putting themselves in a position to really get screwed on this one.’ Because if they’re wrong, if he does have another solid season, if he does even better than he did last year — even by a small margin — man, they are really going to put themselves in a bad spot in that they’re going to have to commit to this guy, and it’s only going to be bigger money than it would have been this year if they tried to work this thing out.”
“I do know other people around the league are looking at this saying that they maybe wouldn’t take the path that the Redskins are going,” he said. “That they would have been more aggressive to try and get this thing done.”
To the quarterback’s credit, Garafolo says he’s been instrumental in changing the culture at Redskins Park, something Redskins General Manager Scot McCloughan made a top priority upon arriving.
“I don’t want to knock RGIII,” Garafolo said. “And RGIII’s going to have a shot to really get this thing going in Cleveland. If he can’t get it going there with Hue Jackson, I don’t know that he’s ever going to get it going again. But back to Kirk Cousins and the Redskins, I keep hearing about how that culture has changed there, and how much more positive things are, how much more calm and level things are since he’s taken over as the quarterback of that team, so that factors into it as well.”
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Garafolo went on to say: “You don’t have a lot to lose if you’re Cousins, because that [franchise] tag’s going to go up next year, you’re seeing guys like Brock Osweiler getting a chance to hit a big deal with another team at a ridiculous amount of money for a guy who, for all intents and purposes, got benched last year. It’s okay to bet on yourself, not only with that $20 million in hand, but also when you know that the bar is so low for you to clear in order to get a good deal going forward here.”