According to one NFL head coach, the Redskins probably could get a quarterback-needy team to surrender a second- or third-round draft choice for Cousins if they decide to trade him after the season.
“I would imagine he would have value . . . It would be based on the [strength of the] quarterback class” in next year’s draft, said the coach, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to comment on the potential trade value of another team’s player.
Cousins would be more attractive because the fourth-round draft pick out of Michigan State has three seasons remaining on his original four-year rookie contract at an affordable salary, the coach said. “That’s a plus,” he said.
Charley Casserly, the former general manager of the Redskins and Houston Texans, said he thinks the Redskins could get a second-round pick for Cousins, if not more.
“He’s worth at least a two,” Casserly said in a telephone interview Tuesday, echoing comments he made after Sunday’s game. “And if you can get a little competition going, depending on how people evaluate the [draft-eligible] quarterbacks—and I don’t think anyone is evaluating them all that highly in terms of the upper half of the first round—you can maybe get two twos, like a [Matt] Schaub or a [Kevin] Kolb.”
The Texans sent a pair of second-round draft choices to the Atlanta Falcons for quarterback Matt Schaub in 2007; the two teams also switched first-round draft spots. Schaub, at that point, was a three-year veteran who’d made two starts for the Falcons.
The Arizona Cardinals traded a second-round pick and cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, a cornerback, to the Philadelphia Eagles in 2011 for Kolb, who had four NFL seasons and seven starts on his pro resume.
A former NFL personnel executive said he believes the Redskins “probably could get a second-round” pick for Cousins because it is a relatively weak draft for quarterbacks.
He said keeping Cousins would be “a no-brainer” if the Redskins had all their draft selections, because of Griffin’s injury risk. But the team might have to at least consider trading Cousins to recoup a pick under current circumstances, said the former executive, who spoke on the condition that he not be named.
The Redskins have given no indication that they would be willing to trade Cousins, making all such talk speculative. But Washington’s offseason strategy will be complicated by a couple of factors.
They have no first-round choice in the next two drafts because of the trade with the St. Louis Rams that enabled them to move up and select Griffin. And they must absorb the second half of a $36 million salary cap reduction ordered by the NFL as a penalty for loading player salaries into the 2010 season, when there was no salary cap.