After being hit with the exclusive franchise tag, Kirk Cousins is not free to negotiate with teams this week. However, he wants out. Cousins appealed personally to owner Daniel Snyder for a trade, but was told not to get his hopes up, sources tell ESPN.com’s Chris Mortensen (on Twitter). Washington has shown “zero inclination” to trade Cousins, adds Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
Cousins has been the subject of trade talk for some time with the 49ers often linked to him. The Redskins have been reluctant to commit to Cousins on a long-term deal, but the Niners would presumably be happy to give him the kind of monster deal he is seeking – provided that they also wouldn’t have to give up too much to acquire him via trade. The Browns, who have even more cap room than the Niners, have also been brought up as a possible landing spot.
On Wednesday, we learned that Snyder may be holding up a potential trade to San Francisco due to his bad relationship with the Shanahans, Kyle and Mike. Snyder reportedly still holds a grudge against the Shanahans after firing the pair following the 2013 campaign, per Jones, and especially dislikes that the duo’s prediction of a failed Robert Griffin III career ultimately proved true. As such, Snyder has no interest in “helping” Kyle Shanahan in any regard, including sending him a ready-made franchise quarterback in Cousins.
Ultimately, Cousins may have no choice but to sign the franchise tender and hope he can reach the 2018 free agent market unfettered. If he chooses that route, he’ll play out the 2017 campaign while earning nearly $24MM.
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