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Redskins Rated Kirk Cousins as 3rd-Best QB in Draft with 2nd-Round Grade

ASHBURN, VA - MAY 06: Kirk Cousins #12 of the Washington Redskins speaks to members of the media after a practice during the Washington Redskins rookie minicamp on May 6, 2012 in Ashburn, Virginia. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images
Sigmund BloomNFL Draft Lead WriterMay 9, 2012

The selection of Kirk Cousins in the fourth round by the Washington Redskins left a lot of people scratching their heads. Some tried to create an instant quarterback controversy, which is absurd considering the king's ransom the Redskins gave up to get Robert Griffin III with the second overall pick.

This week, we got a piece of information from CBS Sports' Rob Rang that eliminates any guesswork or speculation about why the pick was made—he was simply one of the best players left on their board.

Rang reports that a team source told him Washington had Kirk Cousins as a second-round value and the third-ranked quarterback in the draft after Andrew Luck and Griffin.

Rang calls the Redskins' pick of Cousins "hedging their bet on Griffin," although I would disagree with that characterization, because the inside information he got indicates that Cousins was a pick based on pure value, not on the potential for Griffin to bust.

If correct, this information also calls into question Washington's QB scouting. I'm not sure how Cousins could have been rated higher than Ryan Tannehill or even Brandon Weeden based on what I observed. His inability to drive the ball will catch up to Cousins quickly in the NFL.

Rang also cited the injury risk associated with mobile quarterbacks as another good reason to take Cousins, but it's hard to believe that he will be able to do more in his first, and maybe even second year than a veteran like Rex Grossman.

Occam's razor and the inside information from Rang's source guide to the most likely explanation for the Redskins drafting Cousins, and one that has nothing to do with Griffin. They just really liked him as a QB prospect.

While I don't agree with that evaluation of Cousins, I applaud the Redskins for sticking to their board despite what conventional wisdom says about taking two quarterbacks in the first four rounds. 

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