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Redskins GM McCloughan promised to take care of Kirk Cousins


Redskins GM McCloughan promised to take care of Kirk Cousins

Playing in the last year of his rookie contract in 2015, Kirk Cousins ranked as one of the worst-paid starting quarterbacks in the NFL. That changed, significantly, this offseason when Cousins signed his franchise tender, a contract that guaranteed he would be paid nearly $20 million for the 2016 season.

"His wife must have hugged me for 10 minutes because he just went from making $600,000 to $19.9 million," Redskins GM Scot McCloughan told Bleacher Report of the moments surrounding Cousins signing his one-year deal. 

In a wide-ranging interview with BR, McCloughan talked about his philosophy of developing players, and when the time comes, doling out big contracts to players that have earned them. One such player could be Cousins, and McCloughan explained he's already had that talk with his QB.


"I told him, 'You take care of me and this organization, we’re going to take care of you. I promise,'" McCloughan said to Cousins. "'And we’re going to build this roster to where you can be average and still be good. I promise you.'"

The comments come at an interesting time in the negotiations on a long-term deal for Cousins. The Redskins have until mid-July to work a multi-year contract with Cousins before the franchise deal locks in for 2016, though what McCloughan's "promise" might mean could be interpreted a few different ways. Perhaps the GM needs to see the QB deliver another strong season for the 'Skins, and then he will get paid. The other side could argue that McCloughan needs Cousins to be reasonable in his demands for a long-term contract and both sides can reach an agreement.

Without parsing McCloughan's words too much, the "average" line also stands out. Likely, McCloughan is telling his quarterback that the team around him will continue to improve, so much that all the pressure will not fall to the quarterback. Washington's GM even said that his decision to franchise Cousins was panned elsewhere.

"We did the franchise tag, and I know everybody made fun of me, and that’s fine. But you know what? The guy won the division. They won nine games. They won four games the year before and turned around and won nine."

The reality of the NFL - despite the Broncos recent Super Bowl win with a very limited Peyton Manning at QB - is that to really compete at the highest level a team must have a strong passer.

"Let me overpay him if he’s good. If you have a productive guy, it helps everything, and it proves out," McCloughan said of the need for a great QB. "You look around this league and see the teams that are in the playoffs every year and look who the quarterbacks are. Look at the ones who win. It proves out."

Good quarterbacks do indeed tend to "prove out." Division titles, playoff wins, those types of things rarely occur with poor quarterback play. For a season, Cousins looked like that guy for Washington. If he can do it again, there will be lots of money for Cousins. McCloughan promised. 

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

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

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?


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?