Punch Drunk Wonderland

The Alex Smith Trade is a Redskins Embarrassment

Alex Smith Kirk Cousins Trade

Super Bowl LII isn’t here yet. Free agency hasn’t started. But, the Washington Redskins have made waves with the shocker trade that brings Alex Smith to D.C. from Kansas City. This move is a capper on an embarrassment of a situation this organization have put themselves in at the quarterback position. Washington gave up a 3rd Round pick and Kendall Fuller in return for Alex Smith, and the unwritten piece of the deal (no surprise) is they will be letting Kirk Cousins walk in Free Agency.

First, let’s take a look at the numbers for Smith and Cousins. The tables below show the production of both quarterbacks of the last three seasons.

Year GS Comp Att Comp% Yds TD INT Y/A Y/G Rate QBR
Kirk Cousins 2015 16 379 543 69.80% 4,166 29 11 7.70 260.4 101.6 71.00
2016* 16 406 606 67.00% 4,917 25 12 8.10 307.3 97.2 71.70
2017 16 347 540 64.30% 4,093 27 13 7.60 255.8 93.9 50.00
48 1,132 1,689 67.02% 13,176 81 36 7.80 274.5 97.6 64.2
Year GS Comp Att Comp% Yds TD INT Y/A Y/G Rate QBR
Alex Smith 2015 16 307 470 65.30% 3,486 20 7 7.40 217.9 95.4 64.10
2016* 15 328 489 67.10% 3,502 15 8 7.20 233.5 91.2 66.10
2017* 15 341 505 67.50% 4,042 26 5 8.00 269.5 104.7 63.4
46 976 1,464 66.67% 11,030 61 20 7.53 239.8 97.1 64.5

* Made the Playoffs

Smith is coming off of a very good year, but certainly an anomalous one. 2017 saw career highs in completions, yards, TDs, yards per attempt, yards per game, and QB Rating. At 33 years of age I’m going to say the 2017 season is going to be Smith’s golden plateau, and we’re not going to see that again. Remember, this is the “game manager” that went 21 consecutive NFL regular season games without throwing a touchdown pass to a wide receiver while in Kansas City.

Cousins had a down 2017 season, but he still finished out the season 7th in yards, 8th in touchdowns, and 12th in passer raiting. His production has been up and down, but his production over the past several years should be good enough to land him in the top 10 of NFL QBs. After rising up from the ashes of the RGIII fiasco, weathering the storm of doubt, and putting up solid numbers, Cousins has persevered amidst a nonsensical business situation in Washington.

For Washington this is all about a ruined relationship with a good NFL quarterback and an attempt to avoid shelling out big bucks after botching the Cousins situation for two years. Instead they’re still giving up quite a bit of cash to Alex Smith (5-Year $111-million and $71-million guaranteed). Smith may do what he does and provide some game managing stability, but the fact of the matter is that the Redskins did something oh so very typically Redskinesque (Redskinian?). They blew it. They ruined the relationship with Cousins so badly that they knew they were going to have to sell the farm on a new contract, and even if they were willing there is little chance he would really want to stay.

Way to go, Washington. This should be referred to by future organizations as an example of how not to handle a quarterback situation. Oh well, at least now we can get on with enjoying Mahomes in Kansas City….

K. Smelser About K. Smelser
Kelly Smelser is Owner/Senior Writer for Punch Drunk Wonderland and PDFantasy Sports. Architect of the PDW fantasy football world and general spinster of NFL and Fantasy Football news and analysis. Long walks on the beach, sunsets, and other such niceties are also fine...