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QB Kirk Cousins - Washington Redskins

6-3, 214Born: 8-19-1988College: Michigan StateDrafted: Round 4

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Photo: Brad Mills, US Presswire

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News you need to know

From the upgrade/downgrade report (Mon Oct 20): Cousins was upstaged and outplayed by Colt McCoy. "Nuff said.

General News (Tue Oct 21): was benched in favor of Colt McCoy in Week 7 against the Tennessee Titans. After the game, head coach Jay Gruden said Sunday, Oct. 19, that a decision on the starting quarterback for Week 8 against the Dallas Cowboys will be made during the week. It's uncertain if Robert Griffin III (returning from an injured ankle) is an option.

Week 8: at Dallas Cowboys

Mark and Joe say: Neutral matchup. Colt McCoy is likely to start this game for Washington after salvaging a 'W' vs Tennessee last weekend. McCoy connected on all but one of his passes (11/12 for 128 yards, one TD and zero interceptions) and more importantly didn't throw a pick or put the ball on the turf. He was sacked twice for -8 yards. Washington will likely go with McCoy because Robert Griffin III is still rehabbing his dislocated ankle ('He's got to be 100 percent,' head coach Jay Gruden said at Monday's press conference in reference to Griffin. Gruden went on to say that McCoy will get the starter's reps in this week's practices, and be under center against the Cowboys if Griffin can't get to 100% healthy, which means that McCoy is almost surely going to start). McCoy has done stints as the starter in Cleveland during 2010/2011, and had a one-year gig as Colin Kaepernick's backup in San Francisco last season. Now, a new NFL opportunity has come calling - we'll see what the lifetime 421/715 for 4,529 yards passing, 22 TDs and 20 interceptions-thrown quarterback (with 101/362/1 rushing) can accomplish for Washington against their traditional NFC East rivals, under the glaring Monday Night Football lights - in Dallas' house, by the way. The Cowboys rank 12th in the NFL vs. opposing passers, averaging 230.4 net yards allowed per game, with 11 passing TDs given up vs. seven interceptions generated to date (tied for eighth in the NFL). They have just seven sacks this year (tied for 27th). Last week, Eli Manning threw 21/33 for 248 yards passing, three TDs and zero interceptions at Dallas (zero sacks taken); Russell Wilson was sacked twice vs. Dallas for zero yards lost, but only managed 14/28 for 126 yards passing, zero TDs and one interception thrown. McCoy will likely face a stacked box and a strong pass rush this weekend - he'll have to prove he can thrown the football to beat Dallas. Given the up-and-down nature of the Dallas secondary of late, this looks like a neutral matchup from where we sit in the cheap seats.

Recent Stats and Projections

4 vs NYG 19 33 257 1 4 1 12 0 1
5 vs SEA 21 36 283 2 0 2 4 0 0
6 at ARI 24 38 354 2 3 0 0 0 0
7 vs TEN 10 16 139 0 1 0 0 0 1
8 at DAL PROJ-Tremblay 0 0 * * * 0 * * *

Recent Game Summaries

2014 Week 5 vs SEA (21 / 36 / 283 / 2 / 0 pass, 2 / 4 / 0 rush)

Reports of Kirk Cousins's death have been greatly exaggerated. After throwing up a shockingly bad performance last Thursday night against division rival NYG, Cousins looked primed for another disastrous outing Monday night against the vaunted Seattle defense. The extended time off between games seemed to give HC Jay Gruden and his young QB time to work on Cousins's propensity to hemorrhage turnovers. Cousins played a clean and relatively conservative game free of INTs and fumbles, and he was sacked only one time while facing serious pressure for much of the game. Very few of Cousins' passes traveled past ten yards, and with Seattle's notoriously tight coverage smothering Washington receivers, Cousins struggled to convert on third downs, leading to stalled drives for much of the first half. Cousins found his greatest success on the few plays that he threatened the Seattle defense deep, finding his speedy receiver DeSean Jackson on a 60 yard touchdown bomb thrown just ahead of the outstretched arms of a racing Richard Sherman. Unlike last week, Cousins moved well out of a collapsing pocket and threw the pass on the run as he rolled to his right. Cousins hit Jackson on another beautiful deep ball to start the second half, tagging the streaking receiver between double coverage 50 yards down the field. When Cousins wasn't trying to get the ball to Jackson down the field, he targeted Roy Helu Jr. on check downs, nearly connecting with the RB on a wheel route in the third quarter that would have pulled Washington within three points of the Seahawks, but Cousins overthrew him by a few feet. Cousins put up a gritty performance attempting to pull Washington back into the game late in the fourth quarter. He marched down the field running the hurry up offense efficiently and the young QB looked in command for the first time all game. Cousins hit Andre Roberts for the TD to pull Washington within seven points with 3:35 remaining to cap off a fast 80 yard drive. Cousins got the ball back with almost no time left as Seattle ran down the clock on an impressive drive before kicking a final FG to put the game out of reach.

2014 Week 6 vs ARI (24 / 38 / 354 / 2 / 3 pass, 0 / 0 / 0 rush)

The Kirk Cousins roller coaster continued this week against a hobbled Arizona defense missing key pieces of their front seven. Cousins would have finished the game with a solid line, mostly thanks to his receivers, had it not been for the three fourth quarter interceptions he gave up to seal Washington's fifth loss on the year. Cousins failed to move the offense early in the game, stalling drives early throughout the first quarter before connecting with DeSean Jackson for a 64 yard TD pass early in the second quarter to tie the game up at seven apiece. Prior to that pass, Cousins had taken a 10 yard sack where he showed poor pocket awareness and a complete lack of escapability from a moderate but not overwhelming pass rush. However, on second down and 20 Cousins delivered a perfect strike to Jackson on a short slant over the middle just past the outstretched arms of Patrick Peterson. Jackson turned upfield and sprinted another 55 yards to get into the endzone untouched. Cousins almost had another long TD from a 42 yard Jackson bubble screen in the second quarter where the receiver tripped over his own blocker at the 10 yard line. Cousins then failed to convert in the redzone and Washington had to settle for a FG. Cousins's real problems came in the fourth quarter with Washington trailing by 10 points. The mercurial QB began pressing down the field to rally his offense and gave the ball to the opposing defense three times. The Washington defense kept them in the game, however, forcing punts after the first two interceptions. Cousins was able to finally put together a TD drive in the second half, marching Washington down the field in less than a minute and throwing a TD pass the Pierre Garcon to pull Washington within a FG. Cousins looked good running the no-huddle, completing 4/4 passes on the drive. Cousins was able to get the ball back with less than a minute remaining in the game and an opportunity to tie or win the game thanks to the defense holding Arizona to a three-and-out, but Cousins threw a head scratcher of an interception on first and 10 to a Cardinals defender without a Washington receiver within 20 yards of him that was returned for a pick-6 to essentially end the game.

2014 Week 7 vs TEN (10 / 16 / 139 / 0 / 1 pass, 0 / 0 / 0 rush)

The Kirk Cousins era in Washington appears to have finally come to an end. The protean QB was benched after throwing his ninth interception in five starts this year, giving way to journeyman Colt McCoy. Cousins's day began auspiciously when he completed a pass to his TE Niles Paul for 50 yards on the first dropback of the game. The drive stalled deep in Tennessee territory and Washington only came away with a FG, but Cousins looked in control of the offense. Cousins began to press down the field on Washington's second possession, nearly getting intercepted on a pass that was nowhere near a Redskins WR. On the next play Cousins crumbled under a collapsing pocket and fumbled into the arms of a blitzing linebacker, setting Tennessee up with excellent field position at the 15 yard line. Cousins, unfazed, continued throwing downfield on his next possession, connecting with tiny WR Desean Jackson on a jump ball up the right sideline for 37 yards. Cousins ultimately decided to force Jay Gruden's hand after throwing a terrible pick into the arms of LB Wesley Woodyard, who was sitting in the middle of the field with no one near him. Cousins was mercilessly allowed to finish out the half, ending his tenure as the Washington starting QB (for now) running for his life before getting called for an intentional grounding penalty to end the half.


Latest News

Redskins | Robert Griffin to be tested Wednesday (Mon Oct 20, 12:39 PM) - Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) is expected to be put through a rigorous workout Wednesday, Oct. 22, that will give team officials a better idea of where he's at in his recovery. Griffin has already joined practices for stretching, warm-ups, individual drills and limited handoffs with the scout team. Head coach Jay Gruden has said he'd like to have Griffin log at least two weeks of practice before returning to a starting role. QB Colt McCoy appears to have the inside track to start in Week 8 against the Dallas Cowboys if it's between he and QB Kirk Cousins. “It’s a good sign the way Colt finished the game, ran the offense,” Gruden said, alluding to his poise and efficiency in engineering the game-winning touchdown drive on the last possession, which started with 3 minutes and 14 seconds remaining. “Very smart and very efficient. Did some good things.”

Our View: The Cousins time is almost over (if not already) in Washington. Gruden said in his press conference on Monday that Colt McCoy would actually get starter reps this week after replacing Cousins in Week 7. We'll see if Griffin can get back to practice and perform at an acceptable level so he can start on Monday Night Football in Week 8.
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Redskins | QB decision coming this week (Sun Oct 19, 09:02 PM) - Washington Redskins QB Kirk Cousins was benched in favor of QB Colt McCoy in Week 7 against the Tennessee Titans. After the game, head coach Jay Gruden said Sunday, Oct. 19, that a decision on the starting quarterback for Week 8 against the Dallas Cowboys will be made during the week. It's uncertain if QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) is an option.

Our View: No matter who starts, the Cowboys defense is looking like a good pickup for a home Monday night game.
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Redskins | Colt McCoy enters game (Sun Oct 19, 03:17 PM) - Washington Redskins QB Colt McCoy entered the team's Week 7 game after QB Kirk Cousins was benched.

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Redskins | Pierre Garcon backs Kirk Cousins (Wed Oct 15, 01:11 PM) - Washington Redskins WR Pierre Garcon said the team has plenty of confidence in QB Kirk Cousins despite the team's four-game losing streak in which Cousins has struggled mightily at times. “He’s just taking in a lot of stuff right now, but once he gets through this, honestly, he’ll be good to go,' said Garcon. Cousins has 18 touchdowns, 18 interceptions and five fumbles in 13 career games. Cousins is expected to start in Week 7 against the Tennessee Titans.

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Redskins | Kirk Cousins won't be benched (Tue Oct 14, 02:19 PM) - Washington Redskins QB Kirk Cousins is not in danger of being benched in favor of QB Colt McCoy after the team lost their fourth straight game in Week 6, according to head coach Jay Gruden. Cousins now leads the league with eight interceptions, with seven of them coming in the last three games.

Our View: It's Colt McCoy man, Washington doesn't really have a choice but to start Cousins...and cross their fingers for Robert Griffin III to come back quickly. RG3 is getting closer, but might still be a few weeks away.
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