A solid quarterback is a necessity in the National Football League. In the same draft that they selected Robert Griffin III, the Washington Redskins also selected quarterback Kirk Cousins. Cousins sat on the bench for his first season as RGIII took off with an impressive rookie campaign. In the following seasons, the fall of Griffin led to Cousins earning the starting job. Though Cousins has put up solid numbers in the last two seasons, the Redskins have been hesitant to commit to him long-term. Rumors have been flying around about what Washington plans to do with Cousins. So, what should they do?
With a draft class that is lacking in top-end quarterback talent, a quarterback like Kirk Cousins is an even hotter commodity than in the previous year. While trading Cousins is an option, beyond Myles Garrett, there are no players in this draft worth trading your franchise quarterback. Although trading Cousins for the #1 pick might still not be worth it. If history is any indication, a top pick provides no certainty that the player will pan out. So ditching a proven commodity like Cousins for a player who could be a bust is a poor idea. Unless a team could offer multiple first round picks, the Redskins should ignore any trade offers. However, Washington has shown a willingness to put their future in the hands of the draft. The team traded multiple first round picks to acquire the second overall pick in the 2012 draft, which they would use on quarterback Robert Griffin III. The Rams used those picks to bolster their defense, and build a foundation for their franchise. However, not all of those picks were hits, so logic would tell you that the Redskins should refrain from sending a bonafide Pro Bowl quarterback, in return for draft picks.
The Redskins plan for Kirk Cousins should be to sign him to a long-term deal, that will allow them to build around him for the future. At only 28 years of age, Cousins has a lot of gas left in the tank, and should continue to improve. If the Redskins want to keep their quarterback, they will need to lay down a large offer to keep him on board. The risk is just too high to trade him for picks that may turn out to be worthless. The Redskins will be financially unable to give Cousins the franchise tag again next year, the third in a row, so they need to work hard on convincing Cousins to get a deal done this year. Otherwise, Cousins will hit the open market next year, and there will be plenty of teams willing to break the bank for his services.