As expected, Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III has been the predominant focus of the team's training camp this summer, but on Wednesday, RGIII's fellow rookie quarterback was the topic of discussion.
Just not for football-related reasons.
The talk amongst the Redskins Wednesday was quarterback Kirk Cousins' spot-on impersonation of head coach Mike Shanahan during his rookie skit Tuesday.
"We figured it would be best rather than sing to impersonate some coaches," Cousins, who performed the skit with tackle Tom Compton and guard Nick Martinez, said after Washington wrapped up its sixth day of training camp. "Where better to start than the top?"
Cousins made sure to look the part, from gelling, parting, combing and flipping his hair to sporting golf khakis and penny loafers without socks. According to Cousins, he also imitated some of Shanahan's facial expressions while running off several Shanahan sayings that were familiar to the team through meetings. He wasn't sure about how it would go over with his teammates, so when he received a raucous response, he was pleasantly surprised.
"We got a standing ovation at the end," Cousins said. "Some of the coaches said it was the best they'd seen in 20 years, so I was pretty pleased with that."
"Guys were falling out, guys were running up and down the aisles, guys were giving us high fives," he continued. "I was scared we were gonna get crickets, so when they were laughing the way they did, I didn't know what to do. I had to kinda wait to the laughter to die down before I hit my next joke."
The reviews from Cousins' teammates Wednesday were overwhelmingly positive. Running back Evan Royster gave Cousins a nine out of 10; guard Josh LeRibeus said it was "great;" defensive end Jarvis Jenkins said that he would have given Cousins "three thumbs up if I had a third one.”
Yet, none of the adulation mattered as compared to what Shanahan himself thought about it. Cousins said Wednesday that he approached Shanahan after practice Tuesday to warn him of his impending impersonation.
"He said, 'Yeah, that's fine. Usually when a guy impersonates me for a skit, I end up telling him he's gone afterwards,'" Cousins said, recalling his conversation with Shanahan. "After we were done, he said they were looking for a new left tackle and new quarterback. Hopefully he doesn't cut me."
Cousins need not worry. Shanahan is not planning on cutting his back-up quarterback. In fact, he was thoroughly impressed. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, after all.
"Basically, the skit was designed to make fun of me for 15 minutes," Shanahan said, coincidentally while wearing golf khakis and penny loafers without socks. "They did quite a good job. I think he got a standing ovation by everybody in the room, so it was pretty impressive. He had me down perfect."
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