Donovan McNabb Trade: Was It Really Time For a Change?

Jim ReedContributor IJune 7, 2010

It’s been several months for everyone to digest the fact that Donovan McNabb was dealt to the Washington Redskins after a very successful career in Philly, but was it the right decision?

McNabb has been a consistent piece of the Eagles offence since 1999 that has thrived with any supporting cast. From the year 2000 – 2004, He was able to make moves with his feet, passed very accurately to a mediocre cast of receivers, and became a "Team-Leader". McNabb then took the team to the Super bowl when he finally got his #1 Pass catcher in T.O.

In 2005 T.O. became a distraction and was cut. Also in 2005 a sports hernia ended McNabb's season and it even caused him to suffer in 2006.  The Coaches then knew he couldn't do it alone. McNabb’s arsenal became stronger with the addition of Stallworth (a year later replaced with Curtis), then they drafted D.Jackson, then Drafting Maclin. They even upgraded at TE by replacing Chad Lewis with LJ Smith (who became injury prone) then was replaced with Brent Celek. It is easy to see that McNabb’s 2006 - 2009 weapons have become much improved since the 2000-2004 seasons, But why are his stats the same? In 2005 McNabb was "more then awesome" when he was paired up with T.O. was it T.O.? I don’t think so. Something must have happened, Something Changed. But what was it? The 2006 Sports Hernia? -Maybe!

Since 2006, McNabb has become famous for his long bombs down the field as well as his dirt balls to the knees and ankles of his receivers. His accuracy was hit or miss that lasted for the entire game. In 2008 and 2009 you could predict the winner of any Eagles game based upon McNabb’s first two drives. If McNabb was hitting players in stride and connecting the bombs down field, The Game was won. If he was putting the balls on the ground or behind the receivers so that they had to break stride or alter their route to catch it, the game was lost.

With his share of injuries, his Backups shared the same success as McNabb. From 1999 to 2005 Koy Detemer, as well as AJ Feeley did well in the absence of McNabb. In 2006 Jeff Garcia was the Man! 2007 to present Kevin Kolb had his ups and downs filling in for McNabb. As McNabb’s performance has plateaued since 2006 despite the team improving, and all his backups doing well, it begs the question, So why Kolb?

Why Now?

I think it has to do with the nature of Football. The Game is always changing. The players and team have to change with it. Football is getting faster. The Passers have to be quick and precise and Kolb is just that. Although McNabb is slower in the pocket and his ball placement is not as accurate as Kolb, McNabb had one trait that will be missed in Philly. His ability to extend broken plays beyond 10 seconds and get the ball down field. But Since 2007 the Eagles have been building the team to support Kolb. They put in Speedy Receivers that will can catch and run and they have a Westbrook Clone in McCoy along with a Bruiser of a Fullback in Weaver and two line pounding backs in Bell and Charles Scott. McNabb is a very smart man because he saw this coming since 2007. It took me a year later to see it coming when McNabb decided to restructure his two year contract for a, --well, A two year contract with additional money. This was a smart move on Donovan’s part because he knew that this season the Eagles would be forced to make a tough decision: to get rid of Kolb "or" McNabb a whole year earlier then they intended.