The Redskins opted against turning their starting job over to Colt McCoy upon Kirk Cousins' departure, but they are still showing their appreciation for an extension of the head coach in the quarterback room.
Washington has agreed to terms with McCoy on a one-year contract extension worth up to $7 million, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported, via a source informed of the situation. The added year gives McCoy a chance to seek greener pastures if he outplays the deal in the event of an injury to new starter Alex Smith:
The NFL's quarterback market essentially lacks a middle class. Franchise-caliber players typically flirt with $20 million or more annually while backups rarely collect more than $4 million per year.
The Redskins have long believed they could win games in the short term with McCoy, which explains why they are willing to pay him the going rate for a "bridge" quarterback. For comparison's sake, the Bills signed former Bengals backup AJ McCarron to a two-year, $10 million deal with $6 million in guarantees as a hold-the-fort quarterback.
Starting with Andy Dalton in Cincinnati and continuing through Cousins in Washington, coach Jay Gruden has earned a reputation for maximizing the production of hard-working, fundamentally sound passers lacking power arms. That description fits McCoy to a tee.
The Texas Longhorns legend has fared well in limited action over the past four years with the Redskins, completing 98 of 139 passes (70.5 percent) for 1,185 yards (8.5 yards per attempt) and five touchdowns versus three interceptions. While that efficiency is eye-catching, size and durability concerns have kept McCoy in the visor-and-clipboard role behind Cousins -- and now Smith.
If Smith goes down at any point in the next two years, Gruden can rest assured that he has a stand-in capable of keeping the Redskins afloat in a pinch.