The NFL extended the deadline for teams to sign their players on the franchise tag to long-term deal by two days, due to the original date (July 15th) falling on a Saturday. This gives Bruce Allen and company two extra days to negotiate a new contract for franchise QB Kirk Cousins.
Will these two extra days even matter? Is a deal imminent as the deadline approaches?
Jason LaCanfora recently reported that he feels a deal is almost in the bag, citing an 80% chance a long-term deal will be reached by the July 17th deadline. He feels both sides have come too far to turn back now, and it may just remain a small game of chicken until the 11th hour.
Other local beat writers aren't as confident. Rich Tandler may be one of the least optimistic, as he seems to suggest too much bad blood already exists between the Cousins camp and the front office from how things have been handled along this journey. Pro Football Talk's source on the negotiations says there has been "so much noise", but there's "nothing to report" on progress in negotiations.
A long-term deal would benefit Cousins, and his family, greatly. The financial stability it would provide, should set him up for life, while protecting him and his loved ones in case of an unfortunate injury. He also has a baby on the way, and this next year may not be a great time to pick up and move his family. His familiarity with coach Jay Gruden's offense, and the pieces in place around him, have to weigh heavily into this decision. No other quarterback-needy team can boast the offensive line, tight ends and receiving corps the Redskins currently have. No other quarterback-needy team is in a win-now mode much to the situation the Redskins are currently in.
Obviously, the guaranteed money will be the tipping point in any negotiations - as it should be. If the Redskins are willing to give Kirk a hefty guarantee, and make him one of the top five paid signal callers in the league, there should be no reason a deal can't be reached by the deadline.
The Redskins haven't had a franchise quarterback in decades. We finally have one, and this is no time to play a game of chicken with the biggest rooster on the team!