Tom Brady could prove a major factor in Kirk Cousins sweepstakes

ST PAUL, MN - JANUARY 29: Tom Brady
ST PAUL, MN - JANUARY 29: Tom Brady /

As teams get set to make their pitch to free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins, one factor that could be at play is the status of Tom Brady…

When looking at the top two contenders for Kirk Cousins’ services going forward — which right now appear to be the Denver Broncos and New York Jets — there’s one very underrated factor that has to be considered.

Tom Brady.

Why is Tom Brady a factor?

Well, that answer is pretty simple. If Cousins is seriously considering signing with the New York Jets, he’s going to have to deal with the New England Patriots and Brady for at least a couple of seasons, depending on what Brady decides to do.

Obviously the Broncos would perhaps eventually play Brady as well, but with the Jets, Cousins would have to get through Brady just to win the division.

The path to the playoffs is much clearer in Denver for the immediate future than it is in New York, even if the Jets do sign Cousins.

Something Cousins will have to consider if he signs with the Jets is the fact that the Jets’ roster — unlike Denver’s — is not ready to compete for a championship right now. I know not every Broncos fan agrees with me on that, but the Broncos’ core group of players has been to and won a championship before.

That’s not something the Jets can claim.

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For the first three years of Cousins’ new contract, I think there’s no doubt about which team gives him the best chance to contend. Cousins has talked about the fact that he’s not necessarily in this for the money, though money certainly talks.

The Jets can offer Cousins a lot of money, probably even more than the Broncos could justify. Even with that being the case, the Jets can’t offer anyone comparable to the likes of Von Miller and the star-studded Broncos defense.

The Jets also don’t have a receiver anywhere comparable to that of Demaryius Thomas or Emmanuel Sanders, even if the Broncos only keep one.

All of this leading back to Tom Brady.

How can Cousins expect to overcome the Patriots with an inferior roster? It would be a really tough situation to walk into, and to commit yourself to for arguably the best years of your career.

Even if the road to the AFC goes through New England, Cousins has a better shot dethroning them in Denver than he does in New York.