Kirk Cousins Injury Rehab and Effect of Falcons Drafting Michael Penix

The Atlanta Falcons turned heads by selecting former Washington quarterback Michael Penix Jr. at No. 8 overall in the NFL Draft.

Many questions immediately turned to the future of signal caller Kirk Cousins, who signed a four-year deal worth up to $180 million March 13.

Kirk Cousins Injury Rehab and Effect of Falcons Drafting Michael Penix

A common thought that emerged after Penix was drafted centered around the health of Cousins, now six months removed from surgery to repair a torn Achilles suffered Oct. 29.

But Falcons head coach Raheem Morris shut down any possibility of the Penix selection being related to indications about Cousins’ recovery process.

“It has nothing to do with the injury,” Morris said April 25. “At some point, you’ve got to find a way to have that succession plan in place. It just so happened it posed itself. And with the guy we have and the guy that we got and the guy that we think is coming back, we don’t want to be in this position again to pick that guy again.”

Atlanta’s been similarly straightforward in its assurances that Cousins will be the team’s starter, and video surfaced Thursday of the four-time Pro Bowler throwing passes on the Falcons’ practice field in Flowery Branch.

Cousins sits front row in Morris’s team meetings and has been a popular face inside the walls of team headquarters in Flowery Branch since the Falcons started their offseason programs April 2.

Terry Fontenot, Atlanta’s fourth-year general manager, reiterated Cousins’ recovery is in a good spot and the organization is optimistic about what his future holds.

“We’re excited about where Kirk is,” Fontenot said. “We’re confident in him and everything he’s going to do for us. Again, we’re thinking more long term for this. Very, very excited about Kirk. That has not changed. This is thinking about the future.”

And evidently, the Falcons’ short-term future includes a fully healthy Cousins come Week 1.

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