Will Donovan McNabb Expose the Philadelphia Eagles Secondary in 2010?
At first glance one would believe all the things he is saying in the press conferences, where he says that he is glad to be with a coach like two-time Super Bowl winner Mike Shanahan, or how he said he wouldn't look at the games against the Eagles any differently than games against the other division rivals.
The last team he mentioned, though, was the hated—by Eagles fans at least—Dallas Cowboys, and if you are able to read between the lines, it could show Donovan's feeling of revenge towards the disloyal fans over the last 11 seasons and towards the front office that Donovan felt no longer respected him.
By going to a division rival like the Redskins, McNabb knows he is going to a team with a good defense and an offense that he will greatly improve by being the QB there. He is also aware of the fact that the Redskins will play the Eagles twice a year as they have done so for years.
The thing that is eating at me is Donovan also knows that the Philadelphia Eagles defense was outright horrible at times in 2009. Eagles cornerbacks were either leaving too much cushion between themselves and the WRs or, in Asante Samuel's case, were good at making INTs but lacking in the tackling department.
So it's not hard to imagine for even a second that Donovan, who has played for the Eagles over the last 11 years and knows the Eagles' offensive system to a "T," will come into these games feeling as if he has the upper hand with knowledge of the offense and the feelings of being betrayed by the Eagles front office.
He won't say it, but Donovan is out to make anyone associated with the Philadelphia Eagles pay, aiming to make them feel entirely foolish for trading him to a division rival.
In a recent interview on ESPN, Deion Sanders said trading Donovan to the Redskins was, in his own words:
"First thing I had to do was gather myself and sat down because I couldn't believe this was the dumbest thing I've ever heard.
"But you trade a guy in your own division and you've got to see him twice and you have [Kevin] Kolb, [LeSean] McCoy, [Jeremy] Maclin, and DeSean Jackson—seven years amongst the complete trio of playmakers you have for 11 YEARS (his tone raised a bit) that has taken you to five NFC Championships and one Super Bowl—MAN, ARE YOU KIDDING ME?"
Clearly Mr. Sanders believes this was the worst possible move the Eagles could have made in terms of trading McNabb to a different team.
I think what Deion is forgetting is that the Eagles acquired another second-round pick in the 2010 draft, plus Kolb has shown enough to the Eagles' front office to convince them that he can handle being a QB in the NFL, even if he has only started two games (more on that coming up).
Above all that, if Kolb doesn't pan out, the Eagles still have a QB who was at one point in time not only a Pro Bowl player himself, but was also the highest paid QB in NFL history (at that time): Michael Vick.
As I said, it only took Kolb two starts to show the Eagles' front office enough to trade McNabb, so it comes down to one of two things:
1. Kevin Kolb is just that good and is a purely hidden talent about to emerge, or
2. Andy Reid is in fact a fool for thinking Kolb was ready to be a starter, which is why he traded McNabb in the first place.
If Kolb starts off the 2010 season poorly, I wouldn't doubt for a minute he will get benched and Vick will either simply finish out that game or could become the Eagles' starting QB. Everything depends on how Kolb approaches this opportunity, and I don't see anything that tells me he isn't ready.
He will get his INTs down, and if he doesn't, then Vick can start. Nobody is saying there won't be a change at the starting QB position, but the Eagles are saying as of right now—Kevin's destiny is in his own hands.
Or as Reid put it, "The time is yours."
With all that said, I feel Deion's remarks on the trade were more based on mere shock than logical thinking. Or is it me that isn't thinking straight?
I see it as a QB with tremendous potential and some additional high round picks, which the Eagles need to try to bolster their defense, but he sees it as simply "the dumbest thing he's ever heard."
Former NFL player Warren Sapp went on to disagree with Sanders for some of the same reasons I just listed, which tells me ESPN just needed two people to spark debate, nothing more!
Well, Mr. Sanders, I too have to disagree with you.
Even though I'm not thrilled with the fact that the Eagles have to face Donovan twice a year, I do have confidence in Kolb, and those additional picks will help the Eagles nicely.
Donovan is a great QB, but he is known to hold on to the ball a bit too long, and with an offensive line that is a big reason why Jason Campbell failed still serving as your primary line, you have to question just how many times McNabb will hit dirt in 2010, or even worse—sustain injury.
The Redskins no longer have a coveted second-round pick to try to solidify the O-line, and looking at it deeper, they only have a total of four picks in the entire draft.
They are missing picks in the second, third, and sixth rounds of this year's draft.
So I'm not real sure where Deion was coming from when he said the Eagles will be at the bottom of the division in 2010—maybe they will, but I don't think so. I actually think that the Eagles will be 10-6 or possibly 11-5 in 2010, with at least a wild-card spot in the playoffs.
I also believe that Kolb is better suited for the West Coast Offense than Donovan. I'm not saying Kolb is better than McNabb, but better suited for this type of offense.
Time will tell, however. We all have to sit and wait to see if all the McNabb supporters were right or if the McNabb haters are right.
I'm a McNabb supporter that thinks this was the right time to deal him—he just went to the wrong team!
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