Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins in the second quarter against the Seattle Seahawks on Aug. 24, 2018, at U.S. Bank Stadium.

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Documentary Reveals Kirk Cousins Passed On $90M Guaranteed Offer From Jets

Quarterback Signed With Vikings For $84M

August 29, 2018 - 11:20 am
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By WFAN.com

The Jets made the richest offer to Kirk Cousins in free agency, but it still wasn't enough.

In an online documentary, "NFL Life," Cousins is seen getting off the phone with his agent, Mike McCartney, and then telling his wife, Julie, that the Jets had offered a three-year, $90 million, fully guaranteed contract. The footage was filmed in March in the first hours of the NFL's legal tampering period for free agents.

But instead of packing his bags for New York, Cousins discussed using the offer as leverage with other teams. 

"Now you have what we wanted," he told his wife. "Mike, he's just got to do the same thing with the Vikings 'cause he's got to get them from 25 to a number that is competitive with the Jets' offer. But the fact that we have the Jets' offer is huge because now it gives the other teams a reason to come up."

MORE: Lichtenstein: Jets Could Use Pass Rush Help Immediate-Lee

Cousins ended up signing with the Minnesota Vikings for three years, $84 million -- also fully guaranteed. The Jets then turned their attention to signing veterans Teddy Bridgewater and Josh McCown before drafting Sam Darnold with the third overall pick in April.

Cousins, who spent the first six years of his career with the Washington Redskins, admitted before hitting free agency that he was more concerned about winning than earning top dollar.

“Winning is everything, especially at this stage of my career — I’m going into Year 7,” he told WFAN in January. “Because I’ve been franchise-tagged twice, I’ve been in a position where it’s not about the money so much; it’s about winning. I want to win. This isn’t the NBA. You can’t just get one player and now you’re in the AFC championship game or the NFC championship game. … Other pieces come into play.”

The Vikings fell one win short of reaching the Super Bowl last season, despite playing much of the year with their third-string QB, Case Keenum. The Jets, meanwhile, were coming off back-to-back 5-11 seasons.