I’m sure that being benched and eventually cut in favor of a rookie was not the way that Donovan McNabb planned the twilight of his NFL career to play out. But after a tumultuous divorce with the Redskins the prior year and a not so graceful exit in Minnesota, grouped together with the former Eagles great taking shots at Mike Shanahan, one has to ask the question of maybe it isn’t them, Donnie. Maybe it’s you?
About a week ago, McNabb went on ESPN and said he thought Robert Griffin III would be a bad fit in Washington because he would “clash with Mike and Kyle Shanahan because of their egos.” Wow. I’m sure teams are lining up to sign you after a comment like that. True or not, there are some grenades you just don’t hand to the media. Throwing your previous employer under the bus and insulting them is one of those things.
At first, Shanahan declined to reply to McNabb’s comments, but yesterday he finally spoke up when pressed about them.
“I’d like to let the statistics speak for themselves. I think I can take the high road. You can go by so many different stats. The perception, the most basic one people look at is, ‘Did you win a Super Bowl at the end of the day?’
Ouch. That’s hitting below the belt.
Look, the barometer for a great quarterback should never be if they won a Super Bowl or not. Is anyone doubting Dan Marino’s greatness? In all truth, McNabb came closer to winning a title than Marino did. But I’m not going to try and compare the two because it just wouldn’t be fair. I’m simply stating that the championship factor shouldn’t be the gauge for a good or even great quarterback, which McNabb was for many, many years in Philadelphia.
But with his antics the past couple of seasons, is McNabb tainting his legacy? Well, it certainly isn’t helping. Just recently he has done everything in his power to go to the extremities of whining and making it all about him. When asked if Tim Tebow qas the most unfairly criticized quarterback ever, McNabb quickly rebuked that he, himself, was the most unfairly criticized quarterback ever. Why? Because you got a chorus of boo’s on draft day? Get over it. MOST players get booed on draft day.
We all know that the fans in Philly can be rough, but to say that about yourself is just a tad bit narcissistic and completely untrue. When you come up short in as many big games as McNabb did (9-7 record in the postseason), said criticism is warranted, in my opinion. Was it harsh criticism? Certainly. But unfair? Come on, man.
For a guy who has thrown for 37276 yards and 234 touchdowns in his career while winning about 61% of his starts, his numbers are probably good enough to get him into the hall of fame some day. Lesser quarterbacks have gotten in with a lesser resume. But he needs to hire a publicist or something to keep him from putting his foot in his mouth so frequently. Or he’s likely to become an even more criticized bitter former NFL player than he was as a starting NFL quarterback.
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