And the beat goes on.
The Redskins rushed for 64 yards in their loss to the Eagles last night. That dropped their record in games since Jay Gruden arrived as the head coach where they have rushed for fewer than 90 yards to 3-20. In two of their three losses this year, the two losses to the Eagles, the Redskins have rushed for 75 and 64 yards. In their three wins, they have 229, 116, and 94 yards on the ground.
Anyone who watched the game, however, knows the difference in the game was beyond rushing yards. When Eagles QB Carson Wentz had to make a play, he was able to find a way. When Kirk Cousins was in similar spots, he couldn’t. It wasn’t always Cousins’ fault. But in a results business that doesn’t matter.
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Washington is going to have to spend the next decade or so facing Wentz and Dak Prescott. That is a problem they will have to solve. What they have to ask themselves is if they want to get into a very expensive bidding war to retain Cousins, who is very good at times but unable to put the team on his back like Wentz can. Or do they want to try to find their own version of Wentz or Prescott?
The Redskins tried to get their own elite quarterback five years ago and it turned out to be a major mistake. Fortunately, they took Cousins in the fourth round that year and he has been able to keep the team competitive.
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What the Redskins have to do is figure out if the last two seasons plus six games of Cousins are his ceiling. If they decide that it is, can they live with that at a premium price? And if the answer is no, what’s next?
These decisions do not have to be made now. Ten games is a long time and a lot could happen. If the Redskins finish the season within a game of .500, with Cousins continuing to play at a good but not elite level, their decision will be very interesting and will have impact on the team and its long-term future.