Kirk Cousins was back in Michigan recently for a football camp, and as is going to be the case until he signs a contract extension, he got questions about his status.
Over the weekend, Cousins offered up the same cliche most professional athletes offer when asked about their contract. He said it is not about the money, and shame on him if he did build his life based on money.
“I never want to play football thinking about money,” he told WAVY. “I think that you get in trouble doing that. I put my confidence in the Lord, in my faith. If I’m gonna build my life [based] on money shame on me. That’s not where I draw my security from, never should be. My parents didn’t raise me that way.
“So I’m not gonna make it about money before franchise tags; I’m not gonna make it about money now. I’m gonna play, trust the Lord to provide and to protect and lead. And He’ll do what he wants to do regardless of my desires or my plans. He’s going to accomplish his purposes, I’m gonna trust him and put my security there and let that lead wherever it leads.”
Cousins and Washington have until next Monday to reach an agreement on a contract extension. If a deal does not get done by then, Cousins will play under the franchise tag, and the two sides will be able to try and finish a deal after the season ends.
I do think athletes factor in plenty of things other than money when making contract decisions, but money is certainly a notable factor. And there’s nothing wrong with that. In Cousins’ case, it’s not about money in the sense that there are some positives about the DC area. He’s spent a lot of time here, and has a family settled in here. However, it is about the money in the sense that the team won’t increase their offer, and he and his agent likely view that as a sign of disrespect.
But I fully expect Cousins to continue playing the good soldier through this process. He knows he is going to get paid a lot of money in some form or fashion. If he builds on last year, the absolute worst case is Washington uses their transition tag, he doesn’t get the offers he wants on the open market and plays 2018 on the transition tag, getting a fully guaranteed $28 million. If he struggles this year, he doesn’t get his more than $50 million in fully guaranteed money on a long-term deal, but he likely still lands a deal somewhere for a sizable chunk of of change.
Cousins can say it’s not about the money because he knows he is going to get paid either way. All things considered, it’s not a bad position to be in.