But he didn’t feel like Cousins was all-in at times last year in Washington.
Hall made a lap through the ESPN car wash yesterday, and said he never felt like Cousins sincerely wanted to do a long-term deal to stay in Washington last season.
“We kind of felt like the commitment wasn’t there from Kirk,” Hall said, via the Washington Post. “We obviously wanted Kirk. We franchised him because we wanted him there. It was up to ownership and the front office to kind of work those numbers out. They couldn’t get the numbers worked out, so he signed franchise tags those two football seasons. Everybody in that locker room was behind Kirk, wanted him there, but we wanted to feel like he wanted to be there as well. Having played 14 years, I understand, ‘Let’s go get the money,’ but at some point there has to be mutual interest from both parties to want to get better collectively as a team. Paying Kirk probably the $30 million he’s going to get, we couldn’t do that and get better as a football team.”
During a later appearance, Hall said he didn’t think that uncertainty about his contract affected his play, but he thought he’d play with more freedom if he did. And after he heard some of the office gossip about what was being offered to Cousins, there were some players who questioned his motivations.
“I felt like some of the offers that we heard about — just being players in the locker room, you kind of hear whispers,” Hall said. “Some of the offers we felt like we heard, we were like, ‘Man, that’s a good deal. Why wouldn’t Kirk take it?’ So, we kind of did a lot of talking among ourselves, and it was just a feel. He never said anything. He never walked around like, ‘Man, why am I here?’ It was never anything like that. Kirk, from the moment he got in that locker room, he was nothing but a professional. He went about his business.”
Now he’s going about his business again, and it’s taking him out of Washington to a place that will likely give him more than he was ever offered there.