Redskins draft Spartans QB Cousins
With Robert Griffin III already in the fold, the Redskins took Kirk Cousins
The Michigan State quarterback won 27 games as a three-year starter
ASHBURN, Va. (AP) -- While Robert Griffin III was being feted as the newly chosen face of the Redskins at a draft-day party at FedEx Field, in a surprising move Washington selected another quarterback.
The Redskins put some added pressure on the Heisman Trophy winner by selecting Michigan State's Kirk Cousins in the fourth round on Saturday.
The talented Cousins won 27 games as a three-year starter and with the pick coach Mike Shanahan may have created the kind of quarterback controversy that has often enveloped the Redskins
Cousins said during a conference call even he was a little surprised to be picked by Washington.
"I was trying to forecast which teams would be looking at a quarterback and I didn't see the Redskins thinking along those lines, but coach Shanahan's words to me were that he couldn't pass me up," Cousins said.
Griffin said he and Cousins had a long distance relationship in college. It will be up close and personal in Washington. The Redskins gave up three first-round picks and a second-round selection to take Griffin.
Washington was the first team to select two quarterbacks in the first four rounds since Green Bay in 1989. The last time the Redskins chose a quarterback in the top 10 before Griffin was in 1994 when took Heath Shuler. He was eventually beaten out by Gus Frerotte, whom the Redskins took in the seventh round.
With its second pick in Saturday's fourth round, Washington took Texas linebacker Keenan Robinson with a selection obtained in a trade with Pittsburgh.
The Redskins are set for starting linebackers with three-time Pro Bowl pick London Fletcher and third-year man Perry Riley inside and two-time Pro Bowl pick Brian Orakpo and 2011 rookie standout Ryan Kerrigan outside in coordinator Jim Haslett's 3-4 scheme. However, Fletcher turns 37 next month and Washington lacks depth beyond jack-of-all-trades Lorenzo Alexander.
Robinson said he has been told that he'll be moving from college outside linebacker to the interior. He has been working on using his hands to get off blocks and playing with a low pad level while preparing to make the transition.
The 6-foot-3, 240-pound Robinson, the first Texas player chosen in the draft, was a three-year starter in the Longhorns' 3-4 defense. He had 176 tackles, 24 for losses. As a freshman, the Plano, Texas, product was part of an outstanding defense that was led by his friend Orakpo, then an All-American defensive end.
Orakpo "said he loves D.C. and I'm sure that I'm going to love it, too," Robinson said.
The Redskins continued doubling up on positions by choosing Iowa guard Adam Gettis in the fifth round, two rounds after drafting SMU's Josh LeRiebus on Friday. The 6-foot-2, 293-pound Gettis was a three-year starter for the Hawkeyes.
Drafting two guards among their top five picks sends a signal to veteran starters Kory Lichtensteiger - who missed the final 11 games of last season with a torn right ACL - and Chris Chester as well as 2011 rookie Maurice Hurt, who started eight of the final nine games after Lichtensteiger was injured. Gettis and LeRiebus were worked out by NFL teams at center, too, which could also make them backups to Will Montgomery, Washington's starter at that spot.
Unlike LeRiebus, Gettis played in a zone-blocking system in college similar to the one that Mike Shanahan's Redskins employ.
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