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Gruden: Kirk Cousins won the Redskins QB job, RG3 didn't lose it

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Gruden: Kirk Cousins won the Redskins QB job, RG3 didn't lose it

On one hand the Redskins quarterback position looks more stable than it has in years. On the other, planned 2016 Week 1 starter Kirk Cousins is not under contract, and currently, the team is on the hook to pay third-string QB Robert Griffin III $16 million. 

Fans can expect RG3's release very soon, and speaking from the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Washington coach Jay Gruden made clear the team wants Cousins back as starter.

"We’d like to have Kirk back on our football team no doubt," the coach said. "We feel great about his upside."

MORE REDSKINS: MATT JONES NEEDS TO HOLD ONTO THE BALL, PERIOD 

For Cousins, it's all about upside. 2015 was his first season as starter, and it went well, especially late in the year when he and the team got hot, winning the final four games of the year and taking the NFC East crown. Cousins broke most significant Redskins passing records in the process.

Gruden said one thing he liked in particular about Cousins was that there was "nothing at the QB position he couldn’t handle." The coach expects Cousins to continue to grow at the position, especially as he gets a full offseason in the top spot. 

Hurdles remain, however, as Cousins and his agent Mike McCartney are in contract talks with Redskins President Bruce Allen. Depending on the report, the sides remain far apart in the negotiations, and a franchise tag looks likely, at least initially. 

"They’re working with it. They’re trying to get something done," Gruden said of the contract talks. "We'll have to wait and see."

Eventually the conversation turned to RG3, and Gruden said he hasn't talked to Griffin recently. The coach explained that much of Griffin's career has been hampered by injuries, but Gruden also made clear that Cousins won the job in 2015; RG3 didn't lose it.

"It was more Kirk's play than anything," Gruden said, of what put RG3 on the bench for good in 2015. "It was more about Kirk, not as much about Robert as people think."

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Fans, Redskins pay tribute to longtime NBC Sports Washington reporter Rich Tandler

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NBC Sports Washington

Fans, Redskins pay tribute to longtime NBC Sports Washington reporter Rich Tandler

NBC Sports Washington lost an important piece of its family this week when longtime Redskins reporter Rich Tandler died on Tuesday. He was 63.

Tandler joined NBC Sports Washington in 2011. He began his writing career in his 40s after working in restaurants and created his blog, Real Redskins, in 2004, which became the longest-running blog on the team. He also wrote three books on the Redskins and posted an estimated 2,300 consecutive “Need To Know” posts, becoming a must-read for Redskins fans as part of their morning routine.

“We’re devastated to learn of the loss of one of our most loved and valued media members, Rich Tandler of NBC Sports Washington,” Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder said in a statement. “His dedication to covering the Redskins over the past 14 years has made him an irreplaceable presence among our media corps, and he will be in our hearts. Our thoughts are with his family, our family at NBC Sports Washington, and the entire Redskins community. He will be truly missed.”

The team will hold a moment of silence for Tandler before its game against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday and will keep his regular seat on press row empty. On Wednesday, Redskins quarterback Alex Smith offered his “thoughts and prayers to his family.”

“Rich’s kind and warm nature made him a good friend and an especially close colleague to many of us at NBC Sports Washington,” NBC Sports Washington General Manager Damon Phillips said in a statement. “His passion for his work and the Redskins was inspiring and made him a critical part of many of our successes over the past seven years. This is a very big loss for the sports community. Our thoughts are with his family and his many friends.”

Fans, Redskins players, fellow reporters, and friends of Tandler paid tribute to him on social media.

“Incredibly saddened by the sudden passing of NBCSW’s Rich Tandler. He was a great talent and an important voice in the DC sports community. Our thoughts are with his wife @MissSkeetersmom, his family and his family at @NBCSWashington,” Washington Wizards and Capitals owner Ted Leonsis wrote on Twitter.

 

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2018 NFL Power Rankings: Patriots prove they still got it, Rams remain top dog

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USA Today

2018 NFL Power Rankings: Patriots prove they still got it, Rams remain top dog

In a thriller in Foxboro, the Patriots handed Kansas City its first loss of the season.

It wasn't pretty but the Rams slipped past the Broncos to remain the lone unbeaten in the NFL.

Remember when the Lions beat New England on Sunday Night Football and folks were ready to bury the Patriots? Yeah... how did that 'hot take' work out?

CLICK HERE FOR WEEK 7 NFL POWER RANKINGS

Will the real Redskins please stand up? A win over the Panthers moved the Skins up three spots. Give the Redskins this, they are consistently unpredictable.

The Ravens are on the rise and Marcus Mariota is happy the Titans won't have to play Baltimore again.

So the Cowboys have an offense now? Or does Jacksonville not have an elite defense anymore?

And the Bears let Brock Osweiler throw for 380 yards. Yes. You read that correct. 380 yards. 

How far will the Bears drop because of that dreadful defensive performance? 

CLICK HERE FOR WEEK 7 NFL POWER RANKINGS