As Doug Williams gets comfortable in his new position as the Redskins’ senior vice president of player personnel, the front office is already entangled in negotiations with quarterback Kirk Cousins on a long-term deal. After two straight off-seasons placing the franchise tag on Cousins, there is doubt that the Redskins are sold on Cousins and/or Cousins is keen on remaining a Redskin.
Williams recently spoke with NFL Network’s Steve Wyche. Williams stressed the desire of the Redskins wanting to sign Cousins to a long-term deal when asked by Wyche.
“In the worst way,” Williams answered. “Let’s face this thing, the last two years, Kirk Cousins has had tremendous years. And one thing in this league that’s hard to find is that guy to run the football team, and Kirk does a tremendous job doing that.
“And with the weapons that he has and the offensive line that he has, and I think our defense is a little better than what we were last year, quite naturally you want Kirk Cousins as quarterback.”
The most important position on a football team is quarterback, no matter how good the weapons are around him. The Redskins have built a solid roster over the course of the last couple of seasons. Despite losing wide receivers DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon in free agency, the Redskins offense is primed to duplicate their recent success with the addition of Terrelle Pryor to join the established pieces such as Jordan Reed and Jamison Crowder.
It may be in the franchise’s best interest to get a deal done with the proven Cousins. However, their doubt previously has put them in rough spot. As Cousins looks to be rewarded being such an integral part of the team’s foundation and back-to-back 4,000-yard passing seasons, the Redskins are searching for leverage beyond placing a third franchise tag next spring that could cost them over $34 million.
Despite his new position, Williams understands the importance of continuity in the negoatations. Therefore while he hopes Cousins eventually sees the Redskins in his future, he is not going to intervene adding another voice in the room.
“All I can do is hope and pray that Kirk looks at the big picture and looks at this football team and realizes we do have a pretty solid football team, solid offensive line, he’s got something to work with,” Williams said. “Having said that, (vice president of football administration) Eric Schaffer and (president Bruce Allen) have been on this negotiation for a long time.
“I think it’s unfair for me to stick my head into it at this time. Now, I’m aware of what’s going on, but as far as my two cents into it and talking to Kirk and what have you, I think I have to step back from that.”
Williams also mentioned if a deal is not reached with Cousins, Colt McCoy is someone who can “hold the fort” or go the “long distance.”
Williams did a good job of staying right in the middle. He detailed why signing Cousins is the Redskins’ first option. He also highlighted what has been repeatedly reported that Washington’s front office as a whole is confident McCoy can hold the keys in the short or long-term as Plan B.