Kirk Cousins To The Jets Would Be A Mistake
Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan has made it clear there will be an upgrade at quarterback during the team’s season-ending presser. He realizes for them to them to take the next step from a 5-11 team to a playoff team, he needs to find a quarterback that can do better than what he currently has.
Kirk Cousins has been mentioned when it comes to addressing the Jets’ need. The Washington Redskins will let him go as a free agent now that they acquired Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith last week, so the Jets certainly will talk to him and his agent.
Here’s the rub: If Cousins is so good, how come the Redskins decided to seek an upgrade at quarterback rather than bringing him back? They never had any interest in paying him market value at quarterback, which is why he is going to be a free agent this offseason. They made that decision the last two years when they decided not to give him an extension to what he thinks he’s worth.
Despite what the Redskins did, this will not stop teams from seeking his service. Competent quarterbacks are hard to find, and there are teams that want to take the next step from being mediocre to a playoff team. If they are desperate, they will be more than happy to pay Cousins $20 million a year.
The Jets are going to think long and hard about whether they want to pay him or not. In reality, this shouldn’t really be something to think about.
They should not be involved in a bidding war for the soon-to-be free agent. They should focus on resigning Josh McCown for the short-term and draft either Baker Mayfield or Josh Allen.
For one thing, McCown is no different than Cousins. They are good enough to make a team decent at best. In that regard, this past season’s Jets quarterback would be cheaper to sign in the open market than the Redskins free agent-to-be quarterback.
Second of all, the Jets need to develop a quarterback that can win with for the next eight to 10 years. It’s been so long since that happened. Joe Namath was the last homegrown player that the Jets developed well in that position. Yes, the Jets have had bad luck developing quarterbacks such as Browning Nagle, Mark Sanchez, and Chad Pennington’s arm betrayed him with the amount of injuries he suffered that cut short his promising career. But that should not discourage them from drafting a quarterback.
The Jets are better off going with potential than going with a proven quarterback who is nothing more than a game-manager. That’s why it makes more sense to keep McCown and let Mayfield or Allen learn from the current Jets quarterback, who is willing to mentor.
For all the pluses Cousins has such as being durable, completing 67 percent of his passes and being gritty, he has not won the big games when the Redskins needed him the most; whether it was his performance against the Green Bay Packers in the 2015 wild-card playoffs and his playoff-eliminating loss to the Giants in the final week of last season. This is going to be a sticking point in this town. Fans here don’t want quarterback throwing great numbers and coming up lame in big spots.
Cousins Isn’t The Help, He Needs The Help
Cousins is going to need plenty of playmakers for him to succeed with the Jets like he did with the Redskins. The Jets have lack of it, so what’s the point of throwing money away for him? Who’s to say he wants to play for the Jets anyway? He’s going to want to play where he can win and get paid, and teams like the Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings or Arizona Cardinals can offer him the best of both worlds.
He would do the Jets a favor if he signed elsewhere. He is not worth the time and trouble. He would be another quick-fix solution for the Jets that they don’t need. Plus, outside of few quarterbacks that entered free agency, what quarterback has had success as a free agent?
This isn’t Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger and Drew Brees that we are talking about with Cousins, so there’s no need to break the bank for him.
His performance may be appealing for the Jets, but he is far from a difference maker.
The Jets are better developing a difference-maker quarterback from the draft rather than rely on free agency.
At least, a drafted QB will be cheaper.