After two games and two losses, the Washington Redskins are probably leaning towards not giving Kirk Cousins the long-term contracted he was after in the offseason. Maybe, this season is him returning to his old self, and last season was simply a one-time thing.
Cousins, playing under the franchise tag in 2016, isn’t off to the best of starts after his breakout season. The Redskins have lost two home games to the Pittsburgh Steelers and Dallas Cowboys. He has just one touchdown throw to counter his 3 interceptions, leading to a passer rating of 78.5. He threw an awful interception in the loss to Dallas with his team marching to tie the game. There have been rumors circulating that even his teammates are growing tired of him.
Remember, besides last season, Cousins hasn’t shown anything special in the NFL. He finally beat Robert Griffin III for the starting job in 2015, but that might not be that big of an achievement considering how low Griffin’s career has sunk to. The source commenting about Cousins and disgruntled offensive players talked to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, and suggested that Colt McCoy, the backup quarterback, would at least play with poise.
I don’t think we’re that far down the road with Cousins. Yes, it hasn’t been a good start for him, but the defense is probably a bigger issue at this point, giving up 65 points through the first two games of the season. For Cousins, this is more of an issue regarding his next deal. Without a long term contract, Cousins needs this season to be as good as the previous one, when he led the NFL with a 69.8% completion ratio and posted a 101.6 passer rating in 16 starts.
Is it time to panic for the Redskins? Not yet, but a loss to the New York Giants might confirm the worst. It won’t be only a problem for Cousins when he needs to think of how he can get a long term deal at the end of this. It’ll be a problem for Washington again, as they’ll be forced to go out and find a new quarterback. McCoy, if he’s ever used this season, isn’t more than a very short term solution, and not a very good one at that.