The 2017 season ended with the Washington Redskins going 7-9 under Jay Gruden. Since beginning his tenure in 2014, he has only had one winning season and that came in 2015 when they went 9-7.
A lot of what the Redskins want to do in free agency is riding on what happens with Cousins. If the Redskins tag Cousins, he will likely make $34.48 million next season. With that being said, Jay Gruden doesn’t want to go through that again.
“I think something has to be done,” Gruden said, via the Washington Post. “I personally don’t want to go through another one-year deal, and just [keep going] one year, one year. Think you want to have a quarterback in here that’s going to be here. And hopefully that is Kirk, and if not, we have to move on and do what we have to do as an organization. For the most part, the great quarterbacks are in the same system year in and year out, and are developing in that system. [Teams are] not holding our breath every March and April, waiting for the guy. But if that’s the case, that’s the case. But we like Kirk and his development. He’s played well at times, without a doubt, proven that he’s a good starting NFL quarterback.” Quote credit: Dan Steinberg, Washington Post.
If Cousins decides his time is done in Washington, he will have several options as to where he could go.
Jacksonville states they are relying on Blake Bortles, but after his vile performance against Buffalo in the Wild Card game on Sunday, and if the Jags lose to Pittsburgh, that could all change.
Denver is also an option, but if they want Cousins they would have to go on a cutting spree. As of now, according to Spotrac.com they have the 16th best cap space available to spend on free agents at $26,648,793 million. However, that would not be enough to offer a long-term deal to Cousins due to his expected market value to be worth $26.8 million over four years, that is a total of $107.5 million over that span.
A team though that could offer that to Cousins is the Cleveland Browns. According to Spotrac, they have $114,696,229 available in cap space and that is plenty to offer Cousins pretty much any deal he wants. However, money isn’t the deciding factor for Cousins.
“Money is not the driving factor in this decision to go another 16 games,” Cousins said in a radio event with 106.7 the Fan’s Grant and Danny. But, if it isn’t the money, and he doesn’t want to play for a non-contender, then what is the deciding factor? It’s obvious; he wants to test the market and he will get that opportunity.
Unrestricted Free Agents:
Restricted Free Agents:
Exclusive-rights Free Agents:
Breaking down the free agent meaning:
- Unrestricted free agent has the ability to sign with any team, therefore, as of now, the Redskins have 20 players, including Kirk Cousins that can sign with any team.
- Restricted free agent is a player who has special restrictions on the terms under which they can retain or change employment status with their athletic club.
- Exclusive-rights free agents are players with two or fewer seasons of service time and whose contracts have expired.
That being said, the Redskins must bring back Zach Brown. The sixth-year pro from North Carolina finished with 127 tackles, ninth best in the league.
With the Redskins signing Quinton Dunbar to a multi-year deal, it is now likely that Bashaud Breeland will be headed out of Washington to play for another organization. Breeland handled the Redskins’ signing of Dunbar with class and knew it was a business move.
“I understand the business. There’s no hard feelings. I just want to play ball,” Breeland said back in December.
Possible free ree agents leaving:
- Terrelle Pryor
- Bashaud Breeland
- Shawn Lauvao
- DeAngelo Hall
- Will Compton
- Arthur Jones
- Chris Carter
- Junior Galette
- Montori Hughes
- Brian Quick
- Tony Bergstrom
Possible free agents coming back:
- Zach Brown
- Kirk Cousins
- Niles Paul
- Mason Foster
- Ryan Grant
- Dustin Hopkins
- Spencer Long
- Phil Taylor
- Trent Murphy
If Jay Gruden wasn’t on the hot seat before this past season, he surely has to be on the hot seat in 2018. If Gruden and company finish with another below .500 record or another season where they don’t make the playoffs, then without a question he should be let go of his duties within the organization. However, it is Dan Snyder and Bruce Allen, so anything goes.