Kirk Cousins has played out the last two seasons under the franchise tag and there’s been chatter in the last couple of months that a third tag could be in play this offseason despite the Redskins agreeing to a trade bringing Alex Smith to Washington from Kansas City.
The team has until March 6 to decide what to do about a tag, which would come with a $34.47 million salary for the 2018 season if Cousins again played out the year under its terms. That would be a major hit to the team’s cap, which has led to concurrent chatter that they would use the tag with plans to trade Cousins to another team but it sounds like there’s not much fire behind the smoke.
Senior vice president of player personnel Doug Williams met with the media in Indianapolis on Wednesday and said, via J.P. Finlay of NBC Sports Washington, that the team has not had a meeting to discuss using the franchise tag on Cousins. He added that he didn’t think that will change and referred to Cousins as “a free agent for sure.”
Plans can change, of course, but the Smith trade and the Cousins price tag have always made for two compelling reasons for Washington not to use a third tag. That should leave Cousins free to follow through with his plan to make visits with teams trying to sign him once the new league year starts on March 14.