On his sports talk show on the Sports Journey Broadcast Network, Washington Redskins wide receiver Anthony Armstrong expressed his want to keep quarterback Donovan McNabb on the roster.
"Bring my man five back. I want to bring Rex back too, because we have familiarity and everybody has a familiarity with the offense, but I say bring five back. I think that one, he's gonna add that extra element that Rex doesn't have—he's more mobile, he can run. And I think once he gets this year under his belt and gets more confident with the way the offense goes, it'll be more dangerous and more explosive. I think that you've got to bring Donovan back."
This comment by the wideout was brought up on the LaVar and Dukes Show on 106.7 The Fan in Washington D.C.
Both host, Chad Dukes and LaVar Arington believed that it wasn't smart of Armstrong to say something like this in a public manner because it can be taken as insubordination (more on that in a second) but at the same time they both realized that Armstrong wasn't necessarily questioning the coach's decision on his quarterback and it will probably blow over.
After talking about it for a few moments they opened up the phone lines to their listeners.
And wow, did the listeners have a different point of view.
Just about every caller believed that Armstrong will be shipped out of D.C. for those comments made. Many callers alluded that if you cross coach Mike Shanahan in any way he'll get rid of you.
They believe that there is a fine line in the locker room and players are not allowed to express any opinion except the company line.
In fact one caller stated that a player in New England or Pittsburgh would be allowed to make the comments that Armstrong made and he'd be fine, but making them against Shanahan would mean he'd be cut.
First off, everything I've heard and seen within the Patriots organization is that you do not cross Bill Belichick because he will get rid of you. Isn't that right, Randy Moss?
Secondly, we haven't seen Shanahan do such a thing.
You could bring up Albert Haynesworth, but he wasn't shunned for speaking out against the coach or the team—he was shunned for not showing up to minicamp and then being out of shape when he did show up.
And besides, what Armstrong said wasn't that bad. As a receiver he expressed a want to keep around an All-Pro quarterback.
It's not like Shanahan hates McNabb personally—at least I don't think he does—he just feels that McNabb isn't right for his system.
However, I have no doubt that the coach will speak to his wide receiver and basically tell him he shouldn't say things like that publicly. He might fine him, but I really doubt that.
He won't cut or trade Armstrong though.
This team has a lot of holes to fill, and wide receiver is one of those positions. Getting rid of a bright young player because of one harmless comment wouldn't be prudent.
So Redskins Nation, don't overreact to all of this. The comments might irritate the coach, but he won't do anything drastic or stupid because of them.