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How Kirk Cousins would fit into the list of highest-paid DC athletes, with and without new deal

How Kirk Cousins would fit into the list of highest-paid DC athletes, with and without new deal

Kirk Cousins is in a rare and enviable position: Come 4 p.m. on Monday, the Redskins quarterback is going to officially cash in, either by doing something or by doing nothing.

At that time, Cousins will either have a new, long-term contract with Washington, which will pay him a lot of money over a lot of years. Or, Cousins will finally know that he's playing the 2017 season under the franchise tag, which will pay him a lot of money over one year.

Life is good when you can throw for about 5,000 yards and are able to handle playing the most difficult position in sports, apparently.


So, whether or not an agreement is struck between the two sides on Monday, how will the quarterback stack up to other well-compensated D.C. athletes? Let's look at some numbers.

Without a new deal

If Cousins plays out 2017 on the franchise tag, he'll make $24 million. He'll need it, too, considering he has a baby on the way; sources say those things are pretty expensive.

According to research done by CSN's Chase Hughes, that $24 million makes him the second-highest paid athlete in D.C. based on 2017-18 salaries:

1) Otto Porter - $24.8M

2) Kirk Cousins - $24M

3) Bradley Beal - $23.8M

4) Max Scherzer - $22.1M

5) Jayson Werth - $21M


With a new deal  

Now, if the passer and the Redskins surprise almost everyone and do indeed nail down a big, new contract, that'll change the landscape of D.C. athlete salaries. And while the financial details of that contract aren't exactly known, tons of very smart people have been speculating about it, so we can use those numbers to come up with a projection.

If you go based on guesses from ex-GM Charley Casserly (five years, $116 million, $81.5 million guaranteed, $23.2 million average annual value), ex-agent Joel Corry (five years, $130 million, $84.25 million guaranteed, $26 million AAV) and the website Spotrac (five years, $118 million, $66 million guaranteed, $23.6 AAV), you get a contract that averages out to this: five years, $121.3 million, $77.25 million guaranteed, $24.26 million AAV.

Yes, NFL contracts are different than those in other sports so it's not an exact comparison, but that projection has a higher AAV in it than the deals belonging to stars like Werth ($18M), John Wall ($16.95M) and Ryan Zimmerman ($16.6M), but still falls short of many others, such as Scherzer ($30M), Porter ($26.6M) Beal ($25.4M) and Stephen Strasburg ($25M). 

What that tells you is extending Cousins and keeping him in town for a handful of years will be pricey, but it's also a commitment teams like the Wizards and Nationals have made to their cornerstones. Again, the situations aren't all the same, but no matter the sport, the message is clear: Premium talent costs premium money.


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Need to Know: Five final thoughts on Redskins vs. Raiders

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Need to Know: Five final thoughts on Redskins vs. Raiders


Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, September 24, eight days before the Washington Redskins play Chiefs in Kansas City.


Today’s schedule: Redskins Kickoff 7:30 CSN; Redskins vs. Raiders 8:30 NBC

Days until:

—Monday night Redskins @ Eagles (10/23) 29
—Cowboys @ Redskins (10/29) 35

Five final thoughts on Redskins vs. Raiders

—With Rob Kelley out and Jordan Reed unlikely to play, per Adam Schefter, Samaje Perine will get his first NFL start and Jeremy Sprinkle will be active for the first time. Perine got rolling as the game went on vs. the Rams. In quarters 1-3 he had 11 carries with an average of 2.2 yards per. In the fourth quarter, the rookie carried 10 times for a respectable 4.3 average. If he can get that 4.3 average all game and carry between 15 and 20 times, the Redskins will be fine on the rushing front.

—It was in Week 3 last year that Kirk Cousins got rolling. After throwing one touchdown and three interceptions in his first two games he threw two TD’s and no picks against the Giants. His pattern as the starter has been to start slowly and then pick up steam as the season gets going. Looking at the injury situation and at a Monday night game at Arrowhead Stadium looming next week, today would be a great day for him to get going. The talk in Oakland is that the Raiders will load up to stop the run and challenge Cousins to beat them through the air. Cousins will need to take them up on that challenge.

—The Redskins have four sacks in two games. It will be difficult for them to add to that total today because Raiders QB Derek Carr gets rid of the ball so quickly. The best way to get pressure on a quarterback like that is to take the shortest route. It will be important for Jonathan Allen to get some push up the middle and perhaps Greg Manusky will send Zach Brown or Mason Foster blitzing into the A-gap occasionally. The pressure is also on the secondary to make sure tackles after Carr gets those short completions to make sure they don’t turn into big plays.

—I was skeptical of the impact that Oakland RB Marshawn Lynch would have in his return at age 31 after a poor (417 yards) 2015 season followed by a season in retirement. And although there may be reasons to wonder about his durability over the course of a 16-game season, right now he’s healthy. The Redskins’ worst nightmare would be for Lynch to get 15 carries and grind out four to five yards per pop. That would set up Carr to do whatever he wants to do.

—This looked like a tough one even when it appeared that the Redskins would be at full strength on offense. If Kelley and, especially, Reed are out, the game looks to be an even more daunting task. The Washington defense is going to have to step up and force Carr to make decisions sooner than he wants to. Offensively, the Redskins are going to need to keep Carr and company off the field by controlling the clock. They did it last week against the Rams. If they can take time of possession 35 minutes to 25 again they have a chance to pull off the upset. It’s possible but I’m going to go against it happening.

Raiders 28, Redskins 21

2017 predictions record: 1-1

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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Report: Rob Kelley out vs. Raiders, Reed unlikely to play


Report: Rob Kelley out vs. Raiders, Reed unlikely to play

The Redskins could be without two key offensive players against the Raiders tonight, according to a report.

According to ESPN, Redskins starting running back Rob Kelley (rib) is unlikely to play and that Jordan Reed (chest) is a game-time decision but it also is probable that he will sit out. Bot players were listed as questionable on the final injury report on Friday.


Kelley was having a career day against the Rams last Sunday before he left the game in the second quarter with a rib cartilage injury. He practiced on a limited basis all week.

Reed, a key target for quarterback Kirk Cousins, missed some snaps after sustaining the injury to his sternum during the game against the Rams. He was out of practice on Wednesday and limited on Thursday and Friday.

Rookie Samaje Perine saw his first NFL action last week and he likely will get his first NFL start in Kelley’s spot tonight. If Reed can’t play, Vernon Davis will start and rookie Jeremy Sprinkle, who was inactive the first two games, will be in uniform.


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.