It's about official as it can be 14 days out from the start of the new league year: Kirk Cousins is done in Washington.
"We've been playing this tag game for a couple years now, it seems like and it's time to get some stability at our position, the most important position in sports, quarterback," Gruden said, per JP Finlay of NBC Sports Washington. "It's very important for us to move forward and to let Kirk move on if Washington is not a place he wanted to be. It's time for us to move on, get some continuity with our quarterback."
Gruden's comments come a day after Doug Williams, the Redskins' senior vice president of player personnel, all but ruled out the team would use the franchise tag again on Cousins in what would be a far-fetched trading scheme to find some return on the QB's value.
With the Redskins agreeing to terms on a trade for Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith that will become official at the start of the new league year on March 14, it's no secret the Redskins didn't see Cousins as their long-term solution for quarterback continuity -- his two franchise tags also reflect that. Smith certainly seems capable of bringing that level of play the Redskins want -- he led the league in passer rating last season (104.7) and threw for more than 4,000 yards.
As for Cousins, while his 2017 campaign wasn't as good as his 2016 season, the Redskins' almost biblical plague of injuries certainly didn't help Washington's cause. It also won't stop him from potentially becoming the league's highest-paid player in a couple weeks. But trying to figure out Cousins' worth is no longer the Redskins' problem.
"Seeing how you can improve from one year to the next is motivation for all of us," Gruden told the Redskins' official website Wednesday. "...We're right there [to being a playoff contender], no doubt about it."