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Cousins: I won't have many excuses for not meeting high expectations

Cousins: I won't have many excuses for not meeting high expectations

Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins is happy with the passing game weapons that he will have around him this season.

He also thinks that it helped for him to have been in the starting quarterback role throughout the offseason program.

But he knows that his enviable situation puts him under the microscope, perhaps more than many others who play one of most scrutinized positions in sports.

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“There’s no doubt that the circumstances seem to have been set up in a way where I don’t have many excuses,” he said.

When asked about his targets in the passing game, he mentioned wide receivers DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garçon, and Jamison Crowder and tight ends Vernon Davis and Jordan Reed as reasons to be optimistic. He has been working with some of them for a number of years now.

“It's been well documented how much talent there is, and not just talent but experience,” he said.

“I think it's very helpful to have DeSean and Pierre, I've been playing with them for a third season. Vernon's played a lot of football. Jordan, it's been at least three seasons. So these guys have experience and now Crowder, as a rookie with really no foundation. Now with a foundation you'd think that he can take another step forward.

“So it's exciting, I've said it since the spring that there's only one football to go around. My job is to be a good distributor, get the ball in their hands and see what they can do. I'd like to give every single one of them a great chance to help our team win.”

While Cousins is happy to have the talent around him, he is well aware of the danger of setting expectations too high.

“We talk about how the skill position players should be better; that should help us,” he said. “We should be more explosive. And I don’t want to create an environment where these expectations are now where we can’t meet them because we’re supposed to complete every pass and play perfectly.”

There’s certainly nothing wrong with high expectations, especially from a quarterback who is making nearly $20 million this year under the franchise tag. But they can get to the point where they are counterproductive if fans start booing if he throws three incompletions in a row. We will see how Cousins does both meeting and managing those expectations.

REDSKINS OPPONENT RANKINGS: Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Wide Receivers

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Good news Redskins fans: Jason Pierre-Paul shipped out of NFC East


Good news Redskins fans: Jason Pierre-Paul shipped out of NFC East

The Giants shipped out Jason Pierre-Paul for life as a Buccaneer, and in turn, Tampa will send a third and fourth round draft pick to New York.

Moving Pierre-Paul comes at a curious time for the Giants. The team will eat $15 million of dead money in the move, and New York also sent a fourth-round pick to Tampa as part of the transaction. 

What it definitely signals is that Big Blue looks to be moving from a 4-3 base defense to a 3-4 look. Additionally, with the second overall pick in the NFL Draft in April, maybe the Giants will seriously look at NC State defensive lineman Bradley Chubb. 


For the Redskins, seeing Pierre-Paul leave the NFC East is welcome news. He has 12.5 career sacks against Washington QBs, the same amount he has against the Eagles and Cowboys combined. 

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Looking at the details of Zach Brown's contract with the Redskins

Looking at the details of Zach Brown's contract with the Redskins

The Redskins and linebacker Zach Brown agreed to a three-year contract that will require Brown to continue to play at a high level if he is going to collect all of the $21 million the deal contains.

Brown’s camp reportedly was shopping for a contract that had some $20 million in guaranteed money. The actual deal fell well short of that.

Brown, who was leading the league in tackles before an assortment of injuries forced him to sit out the last three games, got a total of $5.5 million in fully guaranteed money. He got a $4.5 million signing bonus and his $1 million salary for 2018 is fully guaranteed.


After that, the remaining two seasons essentially are team options. In 2019 he has a $6.75 million salary and $4.5 million of that is guaranteed for injury. His 2020 salary is $7.5 million with no guarantees of any kind.

The contract also has per-game roster bonuses available at a rate of $15,625 for each game he is on the 46-man game day roster in 2018 (total of $250,000 for the year) and $31,250 per game in 2019 and 2020 ($500,000 total).

The salary cap hits per year are as follows:

2018: $2.75 million
2019: $8.75 million
2020: $9.5 million

The average annual value of $7 million ranks ninth among inside linebackers.

Brown will need to continue to play well to collect on the contract. The team will be able to save $5.75 million on the 2019 cap if they terminate the deal after one season and $8 million if they do it in 2020.


Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.