I listened to both D.C. Sports Talk stations in drive time today out of curiosity. I thought those of us who'd closely watched McNabb for 11 years would get a kick out of some of the things I heard callers & the hosts say:
1. He's a great leader.
This was said over and over and over again; They LOVED the air guitar. LaVar mentioned it specifically. In fairness, Jim Zorn and Jason Campbell were two of the more meek dudes you'll see on an NFL field, so it's a leadership upgrade. And I always thought McNabb's being loose was a sign of poise, that he was prepared and ready to brush off adversity. But to hear McNabb portrayed as someone who will command the huddle and whip Portis and Haynesworth into shape was interesting. On one hand, he's accomplished a lot in this game and other players respect him. He handles himself well. But "leadership," however you define it, was not something that many Eagles fans -- even those who loved the guy -- particularly considered a strong suit. Was it?
2. He's the kind of guy that when you need a score, he gets you a score.
This was said by a fan who called in and sounded like a joker, but made some other good points, honestly. Perhaps after years of failing in a lot of close games, going back to the Gibbs era really, they have a different definition of "clutch." I can think of some times when McNabb led key scores, against Green Bay on MNF, a couple times this year. The comeback against Arizona, even though that game is also cited by his detractors as one where he failed ... Most of us Eagles fans appreciated McNabb's overall body of work, but "when you need a score, he gets you a score" isn't something many of us would say. Either the guy who said that (and hosts didn't dispute) doesn't watch a ton of football, or he formed that opinion by adding the fact that the Eagles have been good for years under McNabb and his fanboy excitedness, and got that.
3. He's one of the top 3 or 4 QBs in the league.
To be fair, on one show the hosts said he was in the tier below elite, aka very good, which is accurate. But someone came out of their mouth and said top 3. Personally I wouldn't rather have had anyone over the past 11 seasons than McNabb except for Brady and Peyton Manning, but ... let's just say most of us consider him top 10 these days but not top 5.
ALSO: One guy called to voice concern about his completion percentage declining.
And Theismann thinks he'll feel the love in D.C. in a way he never did in Philly; Look, we might be hard on our athletes, but when they feel the love, they feel it. Ask Iverson how he feels about Philly. ... Until recently, I thought Redskins fans thought the Redskins could do no wrong and would back any move they make, but they raised hell this year. And 33% of the people in a poll I saw actually didn't like the McNabb move for them.
I'm guessing the folks who see McNabb as a top 3 QB who's clutch and a vocal locker room presence were in the 67%. Funny how things look from the other perspective.