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Why Kirk Cousins is driving his grandma’s conversion van

(Via <a href="">@juliehcousins</a> )

Last week, Jay Cutler showed up to Bears training camp in a conversion van. He got lots of positive publicity for that move.

Kirk Cousins heard about the Cutler van from his wife Julie, who saw the news on Twitter just as they were pulling into D.C. in their new ride. Which happens to be a conversion van.

“That was crazy,” Cousins told me. “Total coincidence.”

Cousins wasn’t trying to make a lifestyle statement with his new wheels. The van was his grandfather’s, a limited-edition 2000 model that Cousins had always admired when he visited his grandparents. His grandfather passed away at the age of 86 during the offseason, and his grandmother no longer needed the vehicle.

“So I said why don’t I buy it off you?” Cousins recalled. “It’ll serve us well, because my wife and I each have a car, but then when people come into town it’ll kind of be a third car. And it’s perfect for driving the hour-and-a-half from Ashburn to the games. And then they can tailgate, and they’ve got a TV in there, and you can kind of carry luggage in there. So it works well when visitors come to town for games, and Julie and I will take it on road trips in the offseason.”

The van, Cousins said, is in very good shape despite being more than a decade old. It comfortably seats seven passengers, and also also has a sofa that folds flat, allowing guests to rest after night games. The van is “a little more roomy than a minivan, but nowhere near [the size of] an RV,” he said. And it already attracted some strange looks back in Michigan.

“You know what, sometimes I’d pull up to a stoplight when I was driving around Holland, and I think they’d expect an elderly person or a middle-aged dad to be pulling up,” Cousins said. “And sure enough, I pull up.”

The van is in Richmond now, but players take a shuttle bus to and from their practice facility, so teammates haven’t yet laid eyes on the vehicle. That day is coming, though; even though he also drives a Chevy Tahoe (from Jim McKay Chevrolet, cha-ching), Cousins plans to use the van around town; “it sits high and it’s comfortable,” he explained.

“Wait until I roll into the facility when we get back to Ashburn,” Cousins said. “That’ll be fun. I think my teammates will laugh a little bit.”