Bruce Allen adamant that QB Kirk Cousins will be back with Redskins

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Washington Redskins president Bruce Allen made it clear where the team stands when it comes to quarterback Kirk Cousins: Washington plans on him coming back.

Cousins, who played under the franchise tag this past season, could become an unrestricted free agent in March.

However, when asked on Sirius Radio Monday if he'd put it as a "10", on a scale of 1 to 10, that Cousins would return, Allen said, "Yeah. Kirk is our quarterback. He's played well the last two years. I know there's other speculation, but it doesn't come from the Redskins."

Earlier in the day, at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, Redskins coach Jay Gruden echoed a similar refrain. He said he has texted with Cousins a couple of times in the offseason. And Gruden told reporters that "I totally anticipate him coming back to the Washington Redskins."

The Redskins were unable to reach a long-term agreement with Cousins last offseason. The sides were $4 million per year apart on a multiyear deal and never closed the gap, even after the Redskins placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on him. Cousins made $19.95 million this past season, when he threw 25 touchdowns and 12 interceptions while throwing for a franchise-record 4,917 yards. He threw 29 touchdowns to 11 interceptions in 2015.

But what Allen and Gruden were unable to answer is how the Redskins will keep Cousins around -- with a long-term deal or with a second year on the franchise tag. The tag would cost the Redskins $23.943 million.

The speculation that Allen mentioned surrounds whether or not the Redskins would trade Cousins, if they used the non-exclusive tag. Another team could negotiate with him until he signs the franchise tender. The Redskins could match any offer, but would receive two first-round picks if they didn't. However, those terms are negotiable.

With former Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan expected to become the head coach in San Francisco, there has been speculation about whether the 49ers would be interested in a deal. Shanahan has been a big fan of Cousins from their time together in 2012-13, when he backed up Robert Griffin III. The 49ers would need a quarterback if they got rid of Colin Kaepernick.