The star QB was the league's MVP in 2016. And now, it reportedly belongs to Atlanta Falcons quarterback and former NFL MVP Matt Ryan. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because financial terms of the deal were not released.
Cousins' stunning deal set the target for Ryan's negotiations with the Falcons, though it might be a short stay at No. 1. It was a deal that has put the Green Bay Packers on the clock in their extension talks with franchise quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
Who else is on that list for 2018? Cousins can max out at $90 million over three years with incentives. General manager Thomas Dimitroff explained the team's position regarding Ryan perfectly when he said "until you find your quarterback, the search for him consumes you".
The 49ers on February 8 signed Garoppolo for five years and $137.5 million, a month before he could have hit the free agent market, indicating a strong relationship between himself and his team team. Since being selected with the third-overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, Ryan has been one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL.
Ryan's 56 wins in his first five seasons with the Falcons were the most by any starting quarterback in their first five seasons in National Football League history. Ryan also became the fastest player to reach 40,000 career passing yards, throwing for 4,000+ yards for the seventh straight season.
If Ryan hits all the marks of Thursday's reported extension, he'll be a strong candidate for 60,000 yards passing and 350 touchdowns by 2022 or 2023. In fact, with Ryan in tow, it's hard to cite any major money hurdle involving the veterans, outside of tailback Tevin Coleman's contract, which expires at the end of the 2018 campaign. "We know there is a lot of work to do, but being able to ensure I can end my career where I started it, is something that I am very fortunate to be able to do".
Ryan, who owns a 95-63 regular-season record and 4-6 playoff mark, now faces the task of leading his team back to such heights and beyond.