Redskins fans like nothing better than debating the likelihood that Kirk Cousins will stay in Washington, leave Washington, get forcefully detained in Washington by a franchise tag or a gabby neighbor, write books about Washington, make a photo collage about Washington, and/or be traded from Washington.

This is the only thing Redskins fans talk about anymore. It gets kind of stale, frankly. But if there’s a consensus on any of it, it’s that circumstances are kind of complicated and finding a long-term deal that would work both for Cousins and the team is one of the NFL’s thorniest problems.

Now into that repetitive consensus comes a grinning blast of aftershave, insisting that no, this is not a problem, and anyhow shouldn’t we all be relaxing and having fun?

“You start out with optimism, of course,” Redskins President Bruce Allen said on ESPN 980 Friday afternoon. “And I don’t think it’s as complicated as everyone wants to make it. And we’ll get together with his agent, and I’m sure we’ll come to an agreement.”

He’s sure they’ll come to an agreement! He’s sure they’ll come to an agreement. He’s sure, by Jove, he’s sure. Cancel the debates, I guess, and stock up on No. 8 jerseys. Just look what Allen said when asked straight up what the team will do with Cousins.

“[Kirk’s] going to be our quarterback,” Allen said, referring to the QB by his longtime nickname of Kurt. “We’ve said it. We obviously like what we’ve done. We think we’re going to get better, that’s the key. And as we talked with [Kirk] earlier today, Super Bowls are real fun when you bring all your roommates with you. That’s when it’s special, and that’s our goal.”


“Why does it seem like there’s someone in the building that’s going thumbs-down when it comes to this decision?” asked Doc Walker, because indeed, that’s what it seems like.

“On [Kirk]?” Allen asked, referring to the QB by his longtime nickname of Kurt.

“Yeah,” Walker agreed.

“Well, I haven’t met that person,” Allen said. (He hasn’t met that person!)

“Oh really?” Walker replied. “It seems a leak will come out that it appears there’s three thumbs up and one thumb down, and I try to figure out who’s the thumbs down.”

“No, if anyone went to all of our games the last few years, you would say that [Kirk] has obviously played well and is getting better,” Allen said. “So there’s no one that I know at Redskins Park. Now, maybe there’s a night guard watchman you’re talking about who didn’t go to any of the games? Possibly.”

But that seems unlikely, is the implication. And so what Allen is saying is that a long-term deal is not that complicated, and that anyone who’s been going to Redskins games could tell you that, and that there is some consensus on keeping Cousins at Redskins Park. Breathe, in other words, and invest your time elsewhere.

Former Redskins coach and all-around poobah Mike Shanahan, meanwhile, was also on 980 on Friday, and was asked what he would do with Cousins if he were the Redskins. Showing great self-control, Shanahan did not mention anything at all about sizing Cousins for his Hall of Fame jacket or even a Super Bowl ring.

“If you believe that he is your future, you sign him to that long-term contract,” the ex-coach said. “It’s hard to find those quarterbacks. They don’t just fall out of the trees. And you take a look at what he’s done the last couple of years, or really over the last four years. And if you can’t figure out that he’s your guy after four years, then you go a different direction. But if you’re pleased with what he’s done and who he is, what type of leader he is, what type of playmaking ability he has and what he can do for your football team, then you sign him to that long-term contract.” 

And if the team makes a commitment to Cousins?

“Then he’s going to make the commitment to them,” Shanahan said. “Kirk, he’s one of the best leaders I’ve ever been around. He picks up everybody’s game. I don’t care if it’s offense, defense, the way he works, the way he handles himself. I mean, everything you look for in a person you’ll find in Kirk Cousins. And they don’t come around very often. And if they make that commitment to him, he will be all in, I promise you that. But if he doesn’t, then he’ll go to a football team where he feels he’s probably appreciated and can take that team to the next level.”