What will it take to keep Kirk Cousins with the Redskins?

kirk cousinsWashington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins picked a good time to have a career year. With his rookie contract expiring, Cousins can now command almost whatever he wants from the ‘Skins, or whoever else wants to enter the fray.

Cousins led Washington to its first playoff appearance in three seasons, throwing for 4,166 yards, completing 69.8 percent of his passes with 29 touchdowns and just 11 interceptions, while demonstrating obvious mastery of coach Jay Gruden’s offensive scheme.

So that’s the good news for the Redskins. The bad news is that the team is going to have to back an armored truck up to his back door to keep him off the free-agent market.

A franchise tag is a possibility, but that comes with a cost – as much as $25 million. A long-term deal is a better option for both sides, but for the ‘Skins it’s going to require a commitment in the range of $17 million in cap space annually, with a huge amount of cash up front.

With all the other needs to be addressed – you saw that swiss cheese defense get melted by Green Bay on Sunday, no doubt, and there are questions at running back with Alfred Morris and at wideout with DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon entering the last year of their contracts – Cousins is priority number one, obviously.

– Story by Chris Graham

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Team of Destiny: Inside UVA Basketball's improbable run

Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25.

The book, with additional reporting by Zach Pereles, Scott Ratcliffe and Scott German, will take you from the aftermath of the stunning first-round loss to UMBC in 2018, and how coach Tony Bennett and his team used that loss as the source of strength, through to the ACC regular-season championship, the run to the Final Four, and the thrilling overtime win over Texas Tech to win the 2019 national title, the first in school history.

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