The Kirk Cousins saga seemed to be quieting down, but Pro Football Talk is here to throw another log on the fire. They are reporting that the Cleveland Browns might try and acquire Cousins via trade. PFT specifically said, “there’s a growing belief in some circles that the Browns will try to acquire Cousins via trade.”
The Browns have an obvious need at quarterback. They recently traded for Brock Osweiler, but it is believed to be no more than a salary dump to get a 2018 second round pick from the Houston Texans. They released Robert Griffin III, but even if he had remained on the roster, he was not going to be a part of the Browns long-term future.
The Browns currently hold the No. 1 and No. 12 picks in the 2017 NFL Draft, to go along with the first pick in the second round and pick No. 20 of the second round via the Tennessee Titans. They have been connected to Jimmy Garoppolo, but nothing seems to be coming of that.
The Browns are likely not in a huge hurry in terms of potential trades. If a deal has not happened by the time they make their two first round picks next month, it will be interesting to see if they have used either of the first round picks on one of this year’s rookie QBs. All of that will tell us how serious they may or may not be about Cousins.
Up till now, the San Francisco 49ers have been viewed as the only likely landing spot for Cousins. There have been reports he has asked out and said he will only sign an extension with Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers. Cousins denied demanding a trade, but the whole thing remains messy.
The 49ers could have a clear path to signing Cousins next spring without giving up draft pick compensation, but Washington or the Browns could get in the way. Either team could use their transition tag on Cousins. If no team signed him to an offer sheet, his current team would owe him just under $29 million on the tender. If another team did sign him to an offer sheet, his current team would be able to match the deal if they wanted. If Kyle Shanahan really wants Cousins, that is one notable way a reunion could be blocked.