Today, the Washington Indigenous Persons failed to reach an agreement with Kirk Cousins on a long-term contract, and he will be the first quarterback of all time to play under the franchise tag twice in a row. Here is the statement from Redskins executive Bruce Allen:
Our goal was to sign Kirk to a long-term contract with the final objective of having him finish his career with the Redskins.
On May 2nd, right after the draft, we made Kirk an offer that included the highest fully guaranteed amount upon signing for a quarterback in NFL history ($53 million) and guaranteed a total of $72 million for injury. The deal would have made him at least the second highest-paid player by average per year in NFL history.
But despite our repeated attempts, we have not received any offer from Kirk's agent this year.
Kirk has made it clear that he prefers to play on a year-to-year basis. While we would have liked to work out a long-term contract before this season, we accept his decision.
Let me translate that for you:
“We didn’t want to pay Kirk Cousins market value because we are cheap bastards and we are also well aware that he is essentially NFC Andy Dalton. There was no way he was getting Derek Carr money from us. Let the Niners do that. So now he gets to play under the tag again, and we’re more than happy to draft Lamar Jackson next year.”
Bruce Allen, what are you doing? When Robert Griffin III wasn’t there for you, Kirk Cousins was. When you became irrelevant as a franchise, Kirk Cousins yelled “You like that?” at a gaggle of reporters and made himself into a meme for you. When you decided to hire the Jeb Bush of football, Jay Gruden as your head coach, Cousins made him look like a competent hire. Cousins is orders of magnitude better than you think he is.
First, Bruce, you drove Scot McCloughan right off the wagon and into the loving arms of Jim Beam. Then you allowed Pierre Garcon and Desean Jackson to walk. And now that you’ve taken all Kirk Cousins’ weapons away, you trap him in a thankless situation wherein you have essentially placed all the blame on him and his agent and washed your hands of the situation. You are not Pontius Pilate and that will not work.
It will not work, Bruce, because while you were a great Raider, you now work for Dan Snyder, the worst owner in all of professional football. You have ZERO goodwill stockpiled, and you do not get the benefit of the doubt. Washington fans are not stupid- they are not Cowboys fans. They can read between the lines. They know you lowballed Kirk, and they also know he doesn’t want to be there anymore. What’s worse, many of them do not blame him because they know how shitty you are.
Also, apparently you do not know the name of the guy you were literally just trying to sign to a contract.
Please enjoy Bruce Allen calling his franchise quarterback by the wrong first name six times in two minutes pic.twitter.com/BVkahmTeqo— Dan Steinberg (@dcsportsbog) July 18, 2017
Contrast your treatment of Cousins to how the Raiders treated Derek Carr. They threw him into the deep end and he floundered at first, but then proved himself to be an All-Pro level talent. So they said, “We’re gonna pay Derek Carr,” and then they paid Derek Carr, and his offensive line. We are all happy here in Raider Nation. There is no animosity between the fans and the players or the team other than about the whole we’re-leaving-town thing.
You, however, in writing this childish open letter have driven a wedge between not only your team and your star quarterback, but also between your team and your city and potentially between your city and your quarterback. That will surely put butts in the seats of your stadium. Seats that have obstructed views, because Dan Snyder is ten pounds of monkey crap in a five-pound bag. It’s called Fedex Field to distract people from the stadium which doesn’t let them see Fedex Field.
Of course, just like most things in life, blame for this situation can be laid squarely at the feet of Mike Shanahan.
Everyone knows Kirk Cousins was not supposed to be the Indigenous Persons’ quarterback of the future. Robert Griffin III was. But Shanahan threw him to the wolves, and left him in a game in which he was clearly injured. Griffin was never the same after the beating he took. Cousins came to play, but Shanahan got fired anyway.
But Shanahan had one trick left up his sleeve- his own son, Kyle, now best known for being the offensive coordinator of a team that blew a 28-3 lead in the Super Bowl. Unlike that slimy weasel Mike Shanahan, Kyle has a great reputation in the NFL for being a sharp mind and a coach players enjoy playing for.
So not only were the Indigenous Persons left with a quarterback they are not at all sold on, to the point where they’ve now lowballed him for three consecutive seasons, but said quarterback also has a strong preference to go play in San Francisco for Kyle Shanahan. The pull of Shanahan is so strong, Cousins feels it’s better to get slaughtered in Santa Clara than in Landover, MD.
The Raiders, under Reggie McKenzie, have not done anything like this. There have been players whose departures were controversial, such as Lamarr Houston and Jared Veldheer, but Reggie was never the one to talk to the media about the contract negotiations. Furthermore, neither of those players feel very missed at the moment. Cousins will be missed greatly when he’s in a Niners jersey next season and the Redskins, who have utterly failed to plan for this situation, are starting Colt McCoy.
We made fun of the Chiefs around here for drafting Patrick Mahomes, but at least they tried. They correctly identified that they have a middling quarterback and they planned for the future. It may work out with Mahomes, it may not. But they did something about Alex Smith.
If Washington thinks so little of Cousins, logic would dictate that they plan for the future by drafting his replacement. They have had ample opportunity to do so. Instead they have tried to have their cake and eat it too, by trying to hold on to a successful quarterback and also not pay him market value. The Persons, much like the city they call home, do not operate with logic or reason. This is a franchise without a plan, without a chance, and without a future.
We all remember the days when the Raiders were the most dysfunctional franchise in the NFL. But things like this show us how good we have it now, and just how many teams are worse off than we are. At this point, that’s just about all of them.