Have the Washington Redskins fans been duked by the team’s front office?
Yes, it appears to be that way. When Scot McCloughan was hired to be the team’s general manager in 2015, it was under impression that he would have total authority of personnel decisions building the roster. However, two years later, we are learning that was never the case. As the team is preparing to part ways from McCloughan and find a new general manager, there is more and more insight being provided to the drama within the team’s organization.
In a Washington Post report describing the rift between McCloughan and team president and former GM Bruce Allen, their disagreements of sorts were detailed. One of the major squabbles appears to be over what to do with Kirk Cousins. That’s not surprising, as it’s already public knowledge the organization is not on the same page on being sold on Cousins. What may be surprising is who’s on Cousins’ side.
In the past, the public has been led to believe that McCloughan was against breaking the bank for Cousins. When Cousins ran over to McCloughan and rubbed his head while rhetorically asking “How you like me now” many thought Cousins was stating a message to the one guy that did not believe in him being the franchise quarterback. However, it’s coming out that was not the case.
In the Post’s report, McCloughan has stated to people around the league, that if he had total authority over the Redskins’ roster, like most GM’s in the league do, he would have been signed Cousins to a long-term deal to avoid all the unnecessary dollars and time wasted with the franchise tags.
The handling of Cousins and his contract also represented an area of disagreement. McCloughan had told people around the league that if he had full control, the Redskins would have signed the quarterback to a multiyear contract in 2016, avoiding the use of two straight franchise tags with long-term resolution. That angered Allen, who in turn started blaming his general manager in league circles for all of the negative media leaks about Cousins. Allen publicly has taken an “all in” approach on the quarterback. But sources say he is still hesitant to give the quarterback a lucrative multiyear deal.
This changes the narrative of the Cousins contract situation. As the debate raged on Cousins, many Redskins fans were led to believe McCloughan was the voice against Cousins being the franchise quarterback, causing many to draw a conclusion that Cousins was not worthy of being in Washington long-term. However, now that it’s been revealed McCloughan, the one sane football guy in the front office, is all for Cousins, how will those fans now react?
With McCloughan, out of the picture, Allen has seemingly turned an about-face publicly, but their initial offer to Cousins on a long-term deal — five years, $100 million — says otherwise. Initially the Redskins were reported to say they had no intentions of trading Cousins and looking towards a long-term deal. However, the team’s president remains hesitant on giving Cousins such a lucrative multiyear deal.
If only McCloughan could have a say in the matter, all of this would’ve been put behind the team. Cousins would be playing on his second-year of a long-term deal. He would have been satisfied with the guarantees and length, and maybe would’ve have signed for considerable less than the number of $24 million per year that is being circulated in rumors.
There is no doubt McCloughan is well-respected around the league for his personnel decisions with and without his demons that have plagued his professional career. Reports have suggested that while in Seattle, McCloughan and the Seahawks’ brass would have drafted Cousins if Russell Wilson was not available during the 2012 NFL Draft. So, it’s seeming that he has been sold on the Redskins signal caller all along. Cousins has done nothing but throw for back-to-back 4,000 yard seasons becoming the first franchise quarterback to ever do so. He threw for 4,917 yards in 2016, and yet for whatever reasons the team is not fully sold on his potential.
Now with all the hesitation, reports have surfaced that Cousins no longer wants to be Washington and wants to ultimately land in San Francisco with his former offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan.