Atlanta Falcons Target Kirk Cousins NFL Free Agency - Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta Falcons get Their Quarterback

The Atlanta Falcons wasted little time with the opening of the contact period in free agency. The contact period opened at 12:00 p.m. EST and at 2:30, news was broken they had signed quarterback Kirk Cousins to a 4-year deal.

Tom Pelissero was first with the numbers on Cousins’s contract besides the overall total.

This boils down to a 2-year, $100-million contract for Cousins with two-option years for the Atlanta Falcons. The guaranteed money is really all that matters when talking NFL contracts. Cousins $100-million guaranteed means the Falcons are financially committed to him for just-two season.

If Cousins plays great, the Falcons could pick up his year-three option, or they could move on with limited cap damage.

The initial-cap hit on Cousins will be in the neighborhood of $35 million. That will be roughly half of the Falcons available money for the 2024 offseason and enable them to still sign a big-dollar free agent like Cousins’s teammate, edge rusher Danielle Hunter.

The Falcons still have the No. 8 pick in the NFL Draft. There are at least three-quarterback hungry teams behind them. The Minnesota Vikings at No. 11, the Denver Broncos at No. 12, and the Las Vegas Raiders at No. 13.

Terry Fontenot can start a bidding war among those teams if Drake Maye or J.J. McCarthy is available and at at least two day-two picks while still having a shot at edge rushers Dallas Turner or Jared Verse.

There are risks with the Atlanta Falcons signing a 36-year old quarterback coming off a season-ending achilles injury, but Cousins was playing at a top-five level last season before he was hurt.

The idea of unleashing Kyle Pitts, Drake London and Bijan Robinson while still being able to add through free agency and the draft has to be an enticing one for Falcons fans despite the risks.

Scott Kennedy
Scott Kennedy is an Atlanta native and 20 year media veteran including time as Director of Scouting at Scout.com, Managing Editor at 247Sports, VP Content Operations at Sports Illustrated and more. Scott has appeared as a recruiting and NFL Draft analyst on dozens of media including ESPN, NFL Network, USA Today, NY Times, and more.
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