WASHINGTON — The Washington Redskins are being coy about their plans and interest in retaining the services of quarterback Kirk Cousins.
The Denver Broncos are not. They want Cousins and he is their ‘Plan A,’ according to insider Troy Renck:
This isn’t exactly profound, but it is another breadcrumb in a trail that could lead Kirk Cousins to the Mile High City (or any other quarterback-needy team).
The Broncos are strong on defense and have weapons on offense, similar to how they looked before putting in a full-court press on Peyton Manning in his final days in Indianapolis. Manning was a turnkey solution that morphed them into an overnight Super Bowl contender.
Now, John Elway and Co. are trying to strike gold again with a quarterback that has less of a resume, but likely a longer window in which to compete and improve.
Cousins makes sense for Denver.
Cousins is in the prime of his career, coming off of his third-straight 4,000-yard campaign. Even without two 1,000-yard receivers from a year ago, a rotating door at running back and a patchwork offensive line, Cousins still put up top-10 numbers in almost every major offensive category.
Denver also makes sense for Cousins. They’re a team built to win.
In Denver, he would join a loaded cast that includes the likes of Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders and C.J. Anderson. The Redskins’ defense was good last year, but the Broncos is and has been better, ranking in the top-five for total, passing and rushing defense.
But, just because things make sense does not mean that they will happen.
The Redskins could still pony up and tag him for a third-straight franchise tag, at a rate of approximately $34 million. They could either let him play out the season on that or start the unenviable task of negotiating a long-term deal with that as the starting point.
Even if Cousins does reach free agency at the start of the new league year, the Broncos may value him less than other teams, both monetarily and emotionally. Cousins has gambled on himself in recent years, and will almost certainly crave the stability of a long-term deal.
“There’s a part of me that would like to get settled,” Cousins told 106.7 The Fan during his “Season in Review” event with Grant and Danny. “You can only go year-to-year for so long.”
Two months until free agency and the Kirk Cousins Sweepstakes is only just beginning.