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Cousins is eager to build on last season’s performance against Cleveland by playing well against first-string defenses during the preseason. He was a substitute last August, so he played against many players he would never face in a regular season game.

His familiarity with teammates on the first-string offense should enable that in the coming weeks. Last season, he worried he would fumble Montgomery’s snap from center because they never practiced together. This preseason, they have thousands of practice reps to rely on.

“I’m not thinking about that anymore,” Cousins said. “I could go on and on with things that are instinctive now that last year I was having to think about and process in my head while I was trying to do everything else, as well.”

He and the Redskins hope that results in several “boo-yahs” during the next three games. Coach Mike Shanahan expects the first-string offense to play 10 to 15 snaps Thursday. In the second and third preseason games, Cousins might stay in the game after the first-stringers come out just to get additional experience.

So if Griffin were unable to play at some point during the regular season, Cousins could smoothly take over at a level much more advanced than he did against Atlanta in October.

“It would be like, ‘Hey, guys. Good to see you again,’” he said.