The Kirk Cousins-Washington Redskins frustration is finally over. Cousins will officially become an unrestricted free agent this offseason after playing on the franchise the past two years, the first quarterback to do so in two straight seasons. The Redskins elected to go with Alex Smith, who they will receive when the blockbuster trade goes through in March. The Redskins agreed to send young cornerback Kendall Fuller and a 3rd-round pick in exchange for the 33-year-old Smith, who had one year left on his contract.
This confirms that the Redskins will not offer a long-term contract to Cousins, who has been their #1 guy for the past 3 seasons. Cousins has passed for 4,000 yards in all three seasons as the starter and has plenty of years left in his game. The question is now, where should Kirk Cousins go? He is poised to make a lot of money this offseason, as there are several teams who could use a quarterback.
There are some teams that are a competent quarterback away from competing for a Super Bowl. Let’s take a look at some possible landing spots for Cousins.
7. Cleveland Browns
Will the Browns get a QB in the draft in 2018? They have 2 of the first 4 picks and their greatest needs are a quarterback, running back, and cornerback. Sam Darnold and Josh Rosen are the two top quarterbacks in the draft and they could easily draft one of them. But if they are somehow able to land Cousins, they could focus on their many other areas of concern in the draft. Pairing up Cousins with ultra-talented Saquon Barkley would make Cleveland have a much more dynamic backfield, but I believe there are much better options than taking over the winless Browns.
6. Buffalo Bills
The 2017 Bills made the decision at one time to start rookie Nathan Peterman over Tyrod Taylor, which shows that their confidence in their regular starter is lacking. I don’t think Tyrod Taylor is a horrible quarterback, but I certainly believe that Cousins is better and is much more of a deep threat. Will the Bills look to move Taylor and bring a proven gun-slinger in to replace him? The Bills were a playoff team in 2017, but I believe Cousins could take them a step further offensively. It probably won’t happen, but Bills Mafia would love to get Cousins on their squad.
5. New York Jets
The Jets have the 6th pick in the NFL draft and they also need a quarterback. Do I see Cousins as the guy to want to take over a New York team? Possibly, but they have a lot of offensive concerns. They will need to improve in all areas on the offensive side of the ball if they have any chance of competing in the AFC East. The Jets won some games late in the season that move them back to the 6 spot instead of being a top 4 pick, which could hurt their chances of getting the QB they want in the draft. Cousins to New York would be interesting, but not my favorite possible spot.
4. Minnesota Vikings
Coming off a 13-3 season and an NFC championship game appearance, the Vikings could be in the market for a new quarterback. With Terry Bridgewater, Sam Bradford, and Case Keenum all scheduled to become free agents this summer, could they be able to bring in Cousins? This may be one of the more exciting landing spots, as Cousins would be paired with receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen. With the 7th most cap space in the league, I believe they would become many people’s NFC favorite if they landed Cousins.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars are coming off a year where they surprised everyone, making a run to the AFC Title game and almost beat the Patriots. Blake Bortles played well in that game, but it wasn’t enough. The organization released a statement earlier this week stating that they want Bortles to be their quarterback moving forward. As a Titans fan, that was sweet music to my ears. I think the Jags are absolute morons if they don’t try to bring Cousins in. I have the Jaguars at #3, but I believe that if Cousins came to Jacksonville, they’d win a Super Bowl. Pairing him with that nasty young defense and Leonard Fournette? Yikes.
2. Arizona Cardinals
With Carson Palmer retiring, the Cardinals need to sign Kirk Cousins. For some reason, I feel like the league has forgotten that they have the most dynamic running back in the league in David Johnson, a future Hall-of-Famer receiver in Larry Fitzgerald, and more young talent. It would be very interesting and I think that he could make the Cardinals competitive in a very tough NFC West. The Cardinals #1 priority should be to get Cousins, because sorry, Drew Stanton is not the answer. And why waste time trying to groom a young QB when a proven one is waiting for you.
1. Denver Broncos
I believe the NFL is better when the Denver Broncos are competitive. They haven’t been able to keep a quarterback for some time now, and many wonder if John Elway is the issue. I see talent in Denver and they have plenty of years left in Von Miller that if they built their team around Cousins, they could get back to the top. Look for Denver to become very interested in Cousins, and I believe Cousins should make the interest mutual.