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If Redskins don't sign Kirk Cousins to multi-year deal, transition tag could be in his future

If Redskins don't sign Kirk Cousins to multi-year deal, transition tag could be in his future

The big offseason storyline for the Redskins is what they'll do with quarterback Kirk Cousins. Washington has signaled that it plans to have Cousins back next year, but the way that happens is still up in the air. 

Generally speaking, speculation has centered on whether the Redskins will sign Cousins to a long-term deal or use the franchise tag to keep him for 2017. 

But according to Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio, Washington should be able to keep the Michigan State product for two years using tags alone. The team could do that by using the franchise tag in 2017 and the lesser-known transition tag in 2018. 

First Florio explains that using the franchise tag in 2017 and 2018 wouldn't make financial sense. 

In 2017, the franchise tag would give Cousins a 20-percent raise over his $19.95 million franchise tag from 2016, which becomes $23.94 million for 16 games. Next year, the franchise tag would result in a 44-percent raise, which would be $34.47 million. This means that Washington, as a practical matter, wouldn’t use the franchise tag on Cousins in 2018 — if they use it in 2017.

However, what happens if the Redskins tag him in 2017, but still don't re-sign him to a long-term deal in 2018? They don't necessarily have to let him walk. Enter the transition tag. 

Washington could apply the franchise tag this year and the transition tag in 2018. By rule, this would result in only a 20-percent increase over Cousins’ $23.94 million compensation in 2017. That approach would cost $28.78 million in 2018, but that would be nearly $6 million less than a third use of the franchise tag. More importantly, it would make the formula for a long-term deal based on the franchise tag more affordable (or less unaffordable) than it otherwise would be.

The snag with the transition tag is that, while Washington has the option to match any offer sheet Cousins receives from other teams, the team would not get any compensation if it declines to match and Cousins leaves. 

There are reasons the Redskins could decide to go the tagging route instead of signing Cousins to a long-term deal. Example: What if the team drafts a developmental quarterback this year or next year, then decides that guy will be ready to start in 2019? 

In summation, the tagging drama may not be over for Cousins this summer. 

MORE REDSKINS: Fans say Redskins are NFL's 3rd-best looking team

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Derrius Guice continues to ingratiate himself with Redskins fans with new fundraising effort

Derrius Guice continues to ingratiate himself with Redskins fans with new fundraising effort

For most college players, being a part of the NFL Draft experience is a dream come true, but for Derrius Guice, it was becoming a nightmare. Originally projected as a first round pick, Guice saw his name falling fast on draft boards due to questions raised about his maturity and high-maintenance personality.

Two months removed from the Redskins selecting him 59th overall, Guice has erased any doubt regarding his character. Whether it be taking fans out to the movies, shooting the breeze while signing autographs, or even the occasional leap frog over two practice barrels and a trainer, Guice has ingrained himself as a Redskins fan favorite. He's done a great job at making himself popular, now he's focused on making change for others. 

On June 20th, a day before his birthday, Guice announced he would be running a fundraiser for the Mary Bird Perkins center, a cancer foundation in his hometown of Baton Rouge. Inspired by his best friend's mother who "rang that bell,"—an indication that a patient has beaten cancer—Guice wants to help others do the same. 

Guice has utilized his newfound popularity to entice other peope to donate. If you donate $5, you can play him in Fortnite. For $50, you guys can go bowling together. Anyone willing to donate $100 or more will be entered in a raffle for tickets to the Redskins Monday Night Football game against the Saints. 

If Guice can match his off the field popularity with on the field production, he'll be in contention for Rookie of the Year. Anyone interested in donating can click here


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Need to Know: Five Redskins on the bubble who could make the roster

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Need to Know: Five Redskins on the bubble who could make the roster

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, June 21, 35 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.  

The first five off of the roster

Here are five players who are not on my projection of the Redskins’ 53-man roster (offensedefense) but who are one injury or a few strong preseason game performances away from making it. 

G Kyle Kalis—Last year he lined up with the second team during most of training camp and he nearly made the roster as an undrafted free agent. The team did re-sign him after injuries struck the O-line in the middle of the season. He will push Tyler Catalina for a backup guard spot. 

RB Byron Marshall—He got a few touches last year before ending up on injured reserve. Marshall has looked good in practices so far, especially catching out of the backfield. Jay Gruden likely will play Chris Thompson sparingly in the preseason and that could give Marshall a chance to shine. Don’t sleep on him. 

WR Cam Sims—Right now, the undrafted rookie out of Alabama looks like the eighth wide receiver on the roster and they are only going to keep six. But if he continues to get the attention of Gruden with his play in practice and makes the most of his opportunities in preseason games, Robert Davis and Maurice Harris should look out. 

S Fish Smithson—The Redskins liked him a lot after they signed him as an undrafted free agent last year. But they didn’t like him enough to keep him on the 53-man roster; he spent the year on the practice squad, getting a late-season cup of coffee on the roster. He will push both Deshazor Everett and Troy Apke for a backup safety spot. If the Redskins have reason to be concerned about the health of Montae Nicholson they might figure out a way to keep Smithson on as a fifth safety. 

ILB Martrell Spaight—It looks like Spaight’s three-year tenure with the team essentially came to an end when they drafted Sean Dion Hamilton in the fifth round. But his play in offseason practices indicates he’s not going to go out without a fight. 

Next five off: OT T.J. Clemmings, QB Kevin Hogan, RB Kapri Bibbs, NT Phil Taylor, CB Danny Johnson

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


Redskins running back Derrius Guice was born on this date in 1997. 

Days until:

—Training camp starts (7/26) 35
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 49
—Roster cut to 53 (9/1) 72

The Redskins last played a game 172 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 80 days. 

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