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Malcolm Kelly Has a Beautiful Voice


Redskins.com photo.

The last of the three Redskins receivers introduced today was perhaps the best known on the Interwebs, thanks to his much-embedded year-and-a-half old freestyling stint. Leading off our Malcolm Kelly highlights, I asked him about the freestyling.

* "Which one?" he said. Ha! Turns out he also freestyled for "The Best Damn Sports Show" last week; "he didn't want to do it," explained dad Moses, who said the show's hosts were hounding his son about it. "He finally started rapping, or 'flowing,' or whatever they call it," Moses said.

The team brought in three receivers today; two rap, and the third wears No. 85 and calls himself Showtime. Who said the B-Lloyd Era is over?

* No, but seriously. You're wondering how this all came about?

"In Texas, that's what a lot of people do," Kelly said. "In Texas we just freestyle a lot. We just be sitting around the house, and obviously you hear songs come on and you just sit there and bob with your friends and just freestyle some. We were just sitting there, and we had just won a big game.

"A lot of times what we did at Oklahoma, they would bring you in and ask you to dance. I'm not a dancer, so when I went in I just freestyled. I did it for PLENTY of games. And what I used to do, whatever came off the top of my head, whatever happened in the game is what I used to talk about. I'll probably end up doing it here again."

* Like, with fellow freestyle devotee Fred Davis, perhaps?

"Oh, for real?" Kelly asked, when told of Davis's skills? "Oh yeah, OH yeah. Might have a CD or something by the time we're done minicamp."

* Did the man have a musical past? He did. Six years of classical piano, including some time communing with Beethoven and Bach. "Until he started kicking and screaming; then we stopped taking him," Moses said. "He was good, he would pick stuff up real well, but he hated it."

His older brother never gave up on music; he got a fine arts degree from Texas and interned with Sony last year, and the family always thought Malcolm had similar talent.

"He really can sing," Moses Kelly said. "He's got a good voice. He uses it all the time. When he used to be out mowing the lawn, you'd hear him over the lawnmower."

"He has a beautiful voice," agreed aunt Sonja Kelly. "It carries."

"He's like the pied piper," said aunt Jo Jones, explaining how all the kids in the family follow Malcolm around.

* Back to his previously mentioned admiration of the Dallas Cowboys.

"The way I look at it I grew up a UT fan and went to Oklahoma," Kelly said. "Every time it came Red River Shootout time, you knew who was the enemy....I'll do it again."

When did he stop liking the Cowboys?

"About two days ago," he said.

That makes the Skins three-for-three in drafting receivers with bizarre collegiate loyalty tales: Devin Thomas lived in Ann Arbor but went to Michigan State, Fred Davis was from Ohio but went to Southern Cal, and Kelly grew up a Longhorns fan and went to Norman.

* Does Kelly keep in touch with Michael Irvin? Sure he does.

"Me and Mike, we've got a good relationship," Kelly said. They met when Kelly was 11 or so, and Irvin has since become an adviser of sorts. Kelly was asked what he's taken from Irvin.

"I mean, just being a physical receiver," he said, "just throwing guys out of the way instead of just trying to finesse it. Certain routes, you knew they was going to him, but you couldn't stop him. Just the mentality that he had out there on the football field."

* Does he like to talk? He does, to the point that a grade-school bus driver was forced to institute a game about which kid who stay quietest for the longest amount of time. But Kelly said he doesn't talk much between the lines, as they say.

"I'm usually quiet on the field, I never really say too much," he said. "But when the DB gets to talking and stuff like that, then, you know, you've got to let him know that he needs to shut up. You show him before you tell him.

* Best tattoo? I guess the Superman insignia on his chest, with an 'M' instead of an 'S.' "

* The hubbub about his time in the 40?

"That's old news," he said. "That's Oklahoma. This is Washington. I'm past all that stuff....I don't put track spikes on and run 40s or run 100s; I play football, that's what I do on weekends....It is what it is. That's in the past, man. That's the last time I will ever do any of those ill drills."

* The suit? For the third time of the day, it was in the cream/tan/light brown family.

"It was free, man," Kelly said. "I don't even know the company. They give you a suit hoping that you like it enough that you'll start buying from them. I think Devin actually had the same suit. He got it from the same company I got mine."

And Jim Zorn, wearing bright white sneakers, khakis, and an ill-fitting blazer? Trying to make his new charges look good on Day I of their Redskins careers?

"I've been in a suit all weekend," he said. "This is the first time I had a chance to take my tie off."

By Dan Steinberg  |  April 28, 2008; 4:59 PM ET
Categories:  Redskins  
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