The NFL is facing a quarterback shortage. A number of teams need both starters and backups and the pool of available signal callers in the draft and in free agency is very thin.
Some are saying that this diminished QB pool is a good reason for the Redskins to trade Kirk Cousins. The laws of supply and demand would say that the team could get a high return for Cousins, who has showed signs of being a capable starter and solid backup options.
But according to multiple reports, the Redskins intend to keep him as the backup to Robert Griffin III with the possibility that he could take on a greater role should Griffin get injured or should his play not be up to par.
You don’t have to dig too deep to find the reasoning behind this decision. A reliable backup is needed for Griffin, who missed games due to injuries in 2012 and last year. If they were to part with Cousins they could have a difficult time securing a backup.
It does not appear that Colt McCoy is going to return to be an alternative to Griffin or Cousins. He started four games for the Redskins, one after Jay Gruden benched Cousins and three after Gruden decided that Griffin needed to sit.
But Gruden won’t have McCoy to turn to, at least not according to a report by Ian Rapoport of NFL Media. He tweeted “Colt McCoy likely elsewhere” after saying it looks like Cousins is staying put.
McCoy is slated to be an unrestricted free agent. Although his arm strength is not ideal for an NFL quarterback he can get you by for a few games. But Scot McCloughan is not interested in bringing him into the mix. Perhaps he would rather have Griffin and Cousins go man to man. They are both going into the final years of their contracts and the team has to make decisions on both of them. McCoy could muddy the waters, taking snaps that are needed to determine if the team has a long-range solution at the most important position on the field.
McCoy is unlikely to be that long-term solution so the Redskins will move on, at least for now. Nothing is set in stone some six months prior to the start of the season.
Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, September 20, four days before the Washington Redskins play the Raiders at FedEx Field.
Today’s schedule: Practice 1:45; Jay Gruden and Kirk Cousins press conferences, open locker room after practice, approx. 3:30
—Monday night Redskins @ Chiefs (10/2) 12
—Monday night Redskins @ Eagles (11/23) 23
—Cowboys @ Redskins (10/29) 39
First look at Redskins vs. Raiders
—This tweet seems a bit audacious. It’s from Vic Tafur, who writes about the Raiders for the pay site The Athletic.
They are second in the NFL in offensive yards and first in points scored. Oakland is fourth in rushing yards and 13th in passing yards. QB Derek Carr is third in the NFL with a stellar 126.5 passer rating and Marshawn Lynch has a bruising 121 yards rushing. They’re good but I would reserve phrases like “doing whatever they want” for teams like the Greatest Show on Turf or the ’07 Patriots. The Raiders aren’t there yet.
—Defensively, the Raiders are just OK, especially considering they have played a Titans team that is solid but not an offensive juggernaut and the putrid Jets. They are 17th in yards given up and tied for 11th in points allowed. They haven’t intercepted a pass although they have two fumble recoveries. They have five sacks, one more than a Redskins team that talks a lot about a need to get to the quarterback.
—Carr and Kirk Cousins have very similar numbers in the two seasons plus two games that they both have been starters. One area where Carr has an edge is in the touchdown passes column. Carr has 65 while Cousins has just 46. The Raiders have some quality receivers in Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper. But Cousins could throw to DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garçon up until this season and Washington also has tight end Jordan Reed. It’s at least a wash in terms of quality of targets if not an advantage to the Redskins. It is something that Carr has solved that Cousins has not. Carr’s ability to get the ball into the end zone helped him become the NFL’s highest-paid player, albeit temporarily.
—Although the Raiders’ offense is not going to make history, the Redskins still need to be prepared to be in a shootout on Sunday night. To be sure, the Redskins defense has improved but it’s hard to see the Raiders scoring less than somewhere in the mid to upper twenties. That means that the Redskins will have to score at least as many points as they did against the Rams, maybe more. They started and ended well in LA; to win next Sunday they probably won’t be able to get away with zero second-half points until after the two-minute warning.
Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.
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In case you missed it
It took the New York Giants a full game and another quarter before they scored their first touchdown of the 2017-18 NFL season.
Giants rookie Evan Engram was the recipient of their first touchdown of the season, scoring the first of his career on Monday Night Football.
Naturally he began to celebrate his accomplishment, but perhaps his celebration was too natural.
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In the clip, right in front of the cameraman, the 23-year-old proceeds to dance with a finishing move crotch grab in the midst of his teammates.
Apparently the loosened NFL celebration rules from this off-season did not take out any sexually suggestive actions.
It resulted in a 15-yard penalty on the ensuing kick-off for the Giants.
With the ball then kicked out of bounds the Lions had the ball at their own 45-yard line.
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Likely the grab will give Engram a fine from the NFL.
Last season Antonio Brown was fined for a similar celebration, by twerking following a score.
The touchdown remains the only time New York has found the end-zone through two games.
With only 13 points it is the lowest scoring two game start in 70 years for the franchise.