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Redskins Playbook: Consensus builds around Kirk Cousins contract, and it isn't good

Redskins Playbook: Consensus builds around Kirk Cousins contract, and it isn't good

If you've read this website, or this column, you know the likelihood of the Redskins reaching a long-term deal with Kirk Cousins before July 17th seems like a long shot. Still, some optimism exists that Washington will pony up the mega-cash required to keep Cousins.

Evidence to the contrary continues to mount. Last week former Redskins GM Charley Casserly explained the numbers required for Cousins' representatives to truly consider signing would be so staggering that he doesn't "see any way a deal gets done." (See full video above).

Well, here are a few more voices echoing Casserly's position.

  • Albert Breer, MMQB: "If Kirk Cousins does a deal now? He’d be walking away from one of three scenarios. The first would be playing on the tag this year and the transition tag next, which would set his earning floor at about $52 million over the next two years, with a chance to test his market value next March. The second would have him franchised twice, setting the floor at $58 million over the next two years, with a chance to be a free agent in 2019 at age 30. The third is $24 million and unfettered free agency next year."
  • Joel Corry, CBS Sports: "Cousins is in an enviable position. It's conceivable that he could do significantly better than this if he hit the open market in 2018, because there are more NFL teams than good quarterbacks."
  • Steve Czaban, ESPN980: "I don’t think the David Carr signing does anything really to help or hurt the chances Kirk signs a new long term deal by July 17. I thought those chances were only about 5 percent before this new QB salary 'data point' and it was a 'courtesy' 5 percent anyway, filed under: 'Well… you never know.'"

There's more of this out there, just look for it. And more of this will pile up over the next few weeks, right up until the point where Cousins does not agree to a new deal with the Redskins and enters 2017 on yet another one-year contract.

ROSTER BATTLES: Left guard | Tight end Nickel cornerback  | Inside linebacker | Running back

The hard truth remains that from a purely financial standpoint it makes very little sense for Cousins to sign a multi-year deal unless it is simply overwhelming with guaranteed cash. The Redskins would almost need to go with a full Vito Corleone "offer you can't refuse" to sign Cousins. 

It's also possible Cousins will realize the money is already staggering and that the situation in Washington is strong. The franchise appears to already be headed in this direction. Doug Williams talked on NFL Network about the need to "look at the big picture." In Jay Gruden's offense, Cousins has excelled, and the team has a strong offensive line with solid skill position weapons. 

Breer also touched on that theory, explaining that maybe the Redskins situation isn't that rosy: "And if you’re Cousins, and you know Kyle Shanahan and the Niners would be out there for you, and you’ve got a new offensive coordinator, and you lost your two starting receivers, and your organization just flipped things around in its front office, the idea of waiting would have benefits beyond just the economics, too."

The evidence slants hard one direction when considering if Cousins will agree to a long-term deal with the Redskins. It doesn't look good. 

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Adrian Peterson is fifth in rushing and, oh yeah, he finally feels fully healthy now

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USA TODAY Sports

Adrian Peterson is fifth in rushing and, oh yeah, he finally feels fully healthy now

The version of Adrian Peterson the Redskins have been getting this year — the one who currently sits as the NFL's fifth-leading rusher and the one who has been the team's only consistent offensive threat — hasn't even been the fully in-shape version, according to Peterson.

If you take him at his word, that's a pretty frightening thought for non-Redskins defenses to ponder.

After practice on Wednesday, the 33-year-old was asked about how he's feeling after dealing with ankle and shoulder problems earlier in the season. Those problems are apparently now all behind him.

"Last week, I actually started feeling all the way healthy," he said in the 'Skins locker room. "My shoulder, I'm back to bench pressing. I hadn't done that in three weeks. And so I'm back to doing the normal things that I was able to do. My ankle's feeling good, my body's just feeling refreshed."

Oh, so the guy who's been averaging nearly 75 yards per game on about 17 carries per game and the guy who's scored four total touchdowns through nine contests is only just now back to normal?

Damn.

"Second half has been a blessing to me, you know?" he said. "It was a grind the first eight weeks, and here now, as I stand in front of you, my body's feeling amazing."

Must be nice to be one of the sport's best players of this generation, huh?

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So what does Josh Norman want from Redskins fans? 'Pandemonium'

So what does Josh Norman want from Redskins fans? 'Pandemonium'

Josh Norman made headlines last week when he called out a subset of Redskins fans for booing the home team and others for not showing up to FedEx Field.

Some fans took exception to Norman's comments, but on Wednesday, the star cornerback made clear exactly what he wanted from fans. 

"You want to see an atmosphere full with raving Redskins Nation fans and pandemonium," Norman said during an interview with Larry Michael on Redskins Nation. 

"That's what you want to see."

Norman's request seems more than fair, especially considering the 6-3 Redskins will take on the 6-3 Texans. Both teams are in first place in their division, and while Washington is coming off a solid road win in Tampa, Houston travels to FedEx Field winners of six-straight. 

"It’s big, because the other team is coming in at 6-3," Norman said. 

6-3 is the best Redskins record this late in the season since 2008, and Norman recognizes his team is trying to turn mediocre tide of recent years and that fans might need a reminder.

"To change that from the culture where it was to now coming around, come on man, we need your support."

For decades, the Redskins fan base was considered among the NFL's best. Venerable RFK Stadium had arguably the best home-field advantage in the league. Norman remembered that.

"This is a signature storied franchise," Norman said. "I grew up with it knowing the Washington Redskins and knowing how big it was. Down in Carolina that was our team. The Washington Redskins was the team of the South. Everybody was about that."

Times change.

The 'Skins left RFK more than 20 years ago and now Carolina roots for the Panthers. 

Still, for Norman and many players, the challenge is out there for the fans to fill up FedEx Field and make it a hostile atmosphere for the Texans.

"From the inside of the stands to the outside of it, all Redskins Nation going in there live, pumping us up. We feeding off of them, we giving them something to cheer for and they giving us back something to be excited for," Norman said. "Those big 3rd downs. As long as we need them, we hear those decibels. We need it up to 105. Literally just blow it off the roof, those decibels, just shoot them up. That’s what we need."

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