According to a report from Eric Galko of Sporting News, Cousins has told at least one person that he will be a San Francisco 49er, whether that happens this year or next year when he becomes a free agent.
Cousins has been linked to the 49ers since the team hired Kyle Shanahan as head coach. Shanahan was formerly his offensive coordinator in Washington and will bring an offense suited to Cousins to San Francisco.
Galko's report is the latest to indicate that Cousins wants a reunion with his old coach.
The Michigan State alum has two potential paths out west: The Redskins could trade him this year, which they've reportedly resisted, or he could wait until he becomes a free agent in 2018 to sign with the 49ers.
The steady drip of reports about Cousins' standoff with the Redskins should be viewed in the context of the larger negotiation. Both sides will try to leverage the media coverage in contract or trade talks.
By signaling that he will walk in free agency, the Cousins camp can apply pressure on the Redskins to trade him now, thus getting something in return, rather than force him to play one more year and get nothing when he leaves.
Washington, for its part, has taken the stance that it won't move Cousins.
That position tells potential suitors that only an extraordinary offer could pry him out of Washington. And it just so happens that San Francisco has an extraordinary asset: The No. 2 overall draft pick.
At most, this latest report tells us Cousins still hopes to force a trade to the 49ers this offseason. But at least, it says Cousins will play out his 2017 contract dissatisfied with the Redskins and biding his time to leave.
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