(Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

Now, he’s been lapped by Robert Griffin III.

But Cooley appears to be as infatuated with RGIII as so many D.C.-area fans. The tight end sat down for an impromptu few minutes with Thom Loverro and Larry Michael on ESPN 980 Friday morning, and the love flowed freely.

“Everyone’s relationship with Griff has been great,” Cooley said. “He has an ability to be a leader. It’s just such an intangible ability. Some guys are born with it, and he has that characteristic. I’m not that kind of person. For me to do what he’s doing would be so forced, but for me to watch him has been a lot of fun.

“He’s a rookie, so right away that’s tough, getting in with your team and being with older guys, but he strikes no one as a rookie. It’s unbelievable. It’s so uncanny that he can come in here, be vocal, be the kind of guy he is.

“I’m not kidding you, he is the most real person that I’ve met in a long time. He has a relationship with every single one of his teammates. He has something to talk about with every one of his guys. Everyone loves him. It’s so real.”

This closely mirrored what Cooley said to Jason LaCanfora on Thursday, which included this slightly more colorful quote — “He's the [bleeping] leader of this football team.”

Cooley was also asked about Griffin carrying helmets off the field after Thursday’s session; “I guarantee you Robert didn’t get asked to carry helmets,” the tight end said. “I’ll bet you my money he went around and picked those helmets up.”

Then Thom Loverro joked that Griffin would eventually tie himself to the goal posts.

“You’re exactly right,” Cooley said. “You’re exactly right. He’ll give himself the rookie hazing.”