It’s going to be a brutal week here in DC on sports talk radio.
Line 1: “Kirk Cousins sucks.”
Line 2: “Scot McLoughan was right for NOT giving him a long term contract.”
Line 3: “The guy chokes under pressure. Even with a franchise tag salary, he’s already playing tight thinking about what will happen this off-season.”
Oh, I can hear these phone calls coming right now. And you know what, I’m not saying they are TOTALLY incorrect.
But let’s start by taking a longer view of what we are looking at.
If Kirk flames out, it’s a disaster. All of the money Scot will have “saved” by not signing him to a long term deal, WILL NOT be able to buy another QB who is better. In fact, it’s almost certain you couldn’t buy a Kirk REPLACEMENT on the open market… for any price.
And if you think Nate Sudfeld is some 6th round diamond-in-the-rough, then you think so based on nothing more than magical unicorn football wishes.
Kirk has played poorly so far in two games. No argument there. He’s been uncertain, inaccurate, late and sometimes brutally blind.
But here’s the reality: every team has spells where their QB plays like shit. Even the best teams, with the guys who are going to Canton under center. It happens. Watch the league, folks.
Last year, Kirk singlehandedly CARRIED this team, through a mortally wounded division, with a smoking hot final 12 games of the year.
Last year’s TEAM wasn’t that good. He carried them.
And this year’s TEAM isn’t seemingly any better. The defense is comically non-violent up front. The running game is a rumor. And the coaching staff has not exactly covered themselves in glory.
Kirk will play better. I am confident of that. And I think he’s still the best option we have at QB, for the foreseeable future. In the meantime, the struggle to get better ALL AROUND continues for the Redskins.
It’s what every good team does. They keep getting better. They keep getting younger. Look around at the starting 22. There are a lot of average guys, and worse yet, they are NOT young. This staff needs to somehow coach contributions out of guys that might not have seemed possible.
The Skins lost to Dallas today because they couldn’t close, and they couldn’t stop a rookie QB on his way to his first pro win. Hell, they didn’t do as much as scare him.
Kirk was a part of it, but not the only reason. So before you get your pitchforks out for #8, just remember: there IS no “Plan B” at quarterback.
If this doesn’t work, it’s back to the wilderness for a while. Nobody should be chesty, or giddy, about that.
Funny the pic in your column is exactly what Kirk needs to do, improvise on off-schedule and pass plays when the receivers are covered. Run Kirk!!!! Run!!!!. Being mobile, which he is, opens up those off-scheduled options.
I had this same battle with fellow cowboys fans for virtually Romo’s entire career. They’ve got arguably a top 10 QB but they think there’s something better out there somewhere. When you ask them to name a replacement, you get crickets.
So are you taking a vacation from 980 this week?
I have Kirk and Andrew Luck on my fantasy team. I played Kirk over Luck in week 2 because I had a feeling Luck would struggle against Denver, and figured Kirk might bounce back from a tough week 1. I was at least half-right, and Kirk nearly doubled Luck’s fantasy points, making the difference between winning and losing the week for me.
I realize fantasy points aren’t anywhere near the whole story, and I’ll take your word for it that Kirk has had two poor games. But I saw a lot of bad QB play on Sunday. QBs who had a worse QB rating than Kirk in week 2: Big Ben, Alex Smith, Rodgers, Flacco, Luck, Winston, and several others. I watched Rodgers throw right into an interception to lose the game. Does that mean he was pressing, worried about contract something-or-other? Or did he just have a bad game?
It’s a lot of ado about nothing, that’s been generated because Kirk is in the odd position of hitting the end of his contract after a single year as a starter. If he still had a couple years to go on his initial contract, everyone would agree that last year showed great potential, that he’s bound to have some sophomore slumping to work through this year, that he still has things to learn, and that the plan is proceeding nicely. But throw in the contract stuff, plus all the remaining angst over Robert, and you get drama.
I think your guest was wrong about one thing yesterday: there is another option between “Kirk has a great year and they pay him a bundle” and “Kirk busts and they dump him,” and it’s the one McCloughan has been angling for (which I think you suggested a while back): Kirk is worse, but still acceptable. The hope is that Kirk will be humbled enough to take a smaller contract, making management look smart. Or if he still wants a big contract, his lower production will justify letting him go and starting over. That way the Redskins would sort of have the upper hand again. Only problem is, for that to work, he can’t play too well or too badly — he has to be just bad enough. So far so good on that front, I guess.
Chris in SLC
I’m sharing this well written story with the expectation you will pay me for delivering content as soon as Twitter pays you. So never.
TJ the Raider Fan
The Skins have false hope generated from a division win in a horrible division. If not for last seasons Bucaneer second half meltdown, Skins fans would see this team & its coach for what it is. I’m a Raider fan; I know mediocre when I see it.