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PHOTO: LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 25: Quarterback Kirk Cousins #8 of the Washington Redskins drops back to pass in the second quarter of a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at FedExField on October 25, 2015 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images)

Kirk Cousins ‘At Peace’ With Rejecting Redskins’ Long-Term Contract Offer

Kirk Cousins has no qualms about playing for the Washington Redskins on a year-to-year basis.

Redskins NEWS: Kirk Cousins HAS NO REGRETS

The Redskins offered the quarterback — who will be 29 in August — a multi-million contract in May, just days after the NFL Draft. This deal would have made Cousins at least the second-highest-paid player in NFL history in terms of average yearly salary, and also included the highest fully guaranteed sum upon signing for a quarterback upon signing ($53 million).

The deal also would have included $72 million in injury guarantees.

However, Cousins turned down the deal, saying he prefers to return to play for Washington for his sixth season this fall without agreeing to any type of long-term contract.

“It was closer than people would think,” Cousins said in a radio interview on 106.7 The Fan on Tuesday. “Even up to a week ago, I was still praying over whether we should send an offer … but ultimately I just felt peace on not making an offer and leaving it up to the team … based on their offers being able to go from there and then the deadline passed and play the season out. That’s what I felt the most at peace about so that’s what we ended up doing.”

Redskins president Bruce Allen released the following statement on Twitter on Monday afternoon regarding Cousins’ decision to reject the team’s offer:

In his radio interview, Cousins also noted that there have historically been many NFL players who have signed long-term contracts, and named some examples: Terrelle Pryor, Spencer Long, Bashaud Breeland, and Will Compton. 

The one-time Pro-Bowler (2016) added that the Redskins’ statement “doesn’t rub me the wrong way at all.” Cousins also revealed that he would like to play for the Redskins beyond next year and that he would be prepared to sign one-year deals with the team for the next ten seasons if need be.

“It has always been my first choice to be with the Redskins,” Cousins said. “When you look around the league and you see great quarterbacks, they’ve nearly all played for one team. And the ones that haven’t, it really wasn’t their choice. It was usually a situation that dictated they had to move on, but that wasn’t their preference. I’m no different, I would love to be with the Redskins long-term. That’s why I think that there’s still a lot of hope that next offseason, when the season ends, the Redskins are going to have I think about two months to be the exclusive team that I can talk with. Then they still have the opportunity, if we’re not anywhere at that point, to use one of two tags.

CBS’s Will Brinson noted that the $53 million the Redskins offered Cousins — a 2012 fourth-round draft pick out of Michigan State — is barely above what the QB will make on the franchise tag in 2017 and 2018, should he become tagged a third time:


Last season, Cousins finished with 406 pass completions out of 606 attempts for 4,917 yards (8.1 passing yards on average) and a 67 percent passer rating. He also finished with 25 passing touchdowns, 4 rushing touchdowns and 12 interceptions and 96 rushing yards.

Over his career, Cousins has a 72-42 touchdown-interception ratio, 12,113 passing yards for a 93.6 passer rating and a 65.9 completion percentage.

“If I’m getting tagged a third time, that means this season went really, really well and that would be a beautiful thing,” he said.

PHOTO: LANDOVER, MD – OCTOBER 25: Quarterback Kirk Cousins #8 of the Washington Redskins drops back to pass in the second quarter of a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at FedExField on October 25, 2015 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images)

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Written by Pablo Mena

Writer and assistant editor for usports.org. NY Giants and Rangers fan. Film and TV enthusiast (especially Harry Potter and The Office) and lover of foreign languages and cultures.