Once news broke out from Washington Redskins camp that no new negotiations would be taking place between Kirk Cousins and the team, and that both sides were “comfortable” playing out the tag, many fans’ first reaction was simple: Oh no. How could this contract situation between Kirk and the Skins have gone any more wrong at this point?
For starters, the Redskins would have been smart to sign Cousins to a long-term deal back in 2015 when he was declared the starter. But alas, they did not, and the Redskins fans are left with yet another quarterback’s jersey in their closet they won’t be able to wear for too much longer. Let’s be realistic about how this will play out: Cousins will have a similar campaign as 2016, and be hitting free agency in his prime.
But what if “everything that could go wrong, goes wrong” for the 2017 Redskins? Cousins starts resembling a shaky quarterback from his early years, the new wide receivers in Terelle Pryor and Josh Doctson aren’t who they thought they were/could be, the running game is still lackluster even after drafting a game-changing back in Samaje Perine, or the injury bug bites the team. Sure, any one of these four scenarios would be catastrophic for the Redskins 2017 campaign.
On the other side of the coin, what if everything goes surprisingly perfect? Kirk Cousins gets elected to the Pro-Bowl and leads the Redskins to the playoffs, the young wide receivers show outstanding growth and put up All-Pro stats, the team has another 1,000-yard rusher in Robert Kelley, and Jordan Reed plays a full season without a concussion. Now, if all these things happen, the Redskins will be an incredibly dangerous team come playoff time.
The other, potentially more dangerous scenario, is the most realistic: a middle of the road, 9-7 season. The Redskins would then be in the exact same spot as the past two seasons, and have no real answers at the quarterback position. A quick look at their schedule below doesn’t have a plethora of “easy” wins either:
If the Redskins can get through their first four games going either 3-1 or 2-2, they do have a chance of doing great things this season. With a week 5 bye, they will already know a lot more about the team they have this year, or be left scratching their heads wondering where it all went wrong. Let the games begin.