NFL Trade Scenarios: 6 Potential Ways Donovan McNabb Gets Screwed Again
For a player with as such a clean-cut reputation as Donovan McNabb possesses, no one has had more controversy swirling around him.
From his draft day booing to Rush Limbaugh's comments to the Terrell Owens feud to this past year in Washington, McNabb regularly becomes the center of attention.
New head coach Mike Shanahan and the Redskins hoped McNabb would bring some offensive life to the D.C. area. Unfortunately, his presence only brought more dysfunction to an already dysfunctional franchise. And now, all signs point to No. 5 being shipped out of the nation's capital.
For McNabb's sake, the best for him would be to start on a stable team that can give him the best chance to chase his first ring and to show that he still has his old magic. Of all the many possibilities of where he will play in 2011, there are some that have serious drawbacks.
Here are the worst-case scenarios for McNabb this year.
Shipped to Cincinnati
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With Carson Palmer's apparent disassociation, the Cincinnati Bengals are in need of a quarterback.
Head coach Marvin Lewis stated recently that rookie QB Andy Dalton would be the starter, but of course that is a statement that can be revised depending on events leading up to the new season.
Surely Lewis would jump at the chance to take McNabb, should he be on the trade market when the lockout ends. It would be the best move to try and save his job – one that is tenuous at best.
Chad Ochocinco and rookie A.J. Green are great receiving targets to throw to, while Cedric Benson ran for more than 1,100 yards rushing in 2010.
That makes the Bengals the best option for McNabb of the one's presented on this list. The wild card is the possible return of Terrell Owens to the lineup following his injury. We've heard they made up from their squabbles in 2005, but T.O. can certainly re-light the fire at a moment's notice. And wouldn't that make sports gossip connoisseurs salivate?
Sent to Seattle
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This is a trade possibility that hasn't been talked about much lately.
McNabb to Seattle has plenty of positives. He would be playing with a quality running back in Marshawn Lynch. He should be in a West Coast Offense system with new coordinator Darrell Bevell. The offensive line is young, but emerging.
The first problem, though, is a potential short leash. Head coach Pete Carroll likes back-up Charlie Whitehurst and may be quick to insert him into the starting role at the first sign of McNabb struggling.
Secondly, if McNabb latches on to the Seahawks and performs well, playoff appearances are likely. However, a chance at a championship won't be. The Packers, Eagles, Falcons and Saints all appear to be formidable foes in the NFC over the course of the next couple of years.
McNabb can give Seattle another division championship in a weak NFC West, but the competition will be too hard trying to get to the Super Bowl.
The Titans Take a Chance
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Chris Johnson is arguably the best running back in the game, but there is a chance of him leaving Nashville thanks to a contract dispute.
If the speedy Johnson does bolt town, this would make a trade to the Titans even more unsettling for McNabb.
Tennessee is a team in transition, as they recently fired longtime head coach Jeff Fisher. It appears to be a franchise that's trying to rebuild rather than win right now, even if they do have a talented ball carrier in the backfield.
Donovan McNabb, at his advanced football age, doesn't need a rebuilding project to help oversee.
Dealt to the Buffalo Bills
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When you have to choose between either Ryan Fitzpatrick and Brian Brohm taking snaps behind center for your team, thoughts naturally turn to getting outside help.
For a team that last year was ranked 24th overall in passing offense, Donovan McNabb's addition to the Bills roster would be welcome sight.
The problems, though, are too much to overcome. Steve Johnson isn't the No. 1 wide receiver that McNabb needs to be successful. The running game is so-so, finishing 2010 ranked 18th in average yardage. Lastly, Chan Gailey (22-28 overall in the NFL) is not a coach that can turn a team around.
Just as is the case with Tennessee, the Bills are not going anywhere fast – especially with New York and New England in their way in the AFC East. Donovan McNabb's dreams of a title would be squashed with a trade to Buffalo.
Donning the Silver and Black
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Granted, the Raiders did finish 2010 with an 8-8 mark and have emerging running back Darren McFadden toting the football.
However, the lack of talent catching the ball is troubling. Jacoby Ford, Louis Murphy and Darrius Heyward-Bey aren't good enough to help out McNabb at this point in his career. He had very meager results with the Redskins' mediocre receiving corps.
Oakland's offensive line was extremely porous, allowing 44 quarterback sacks—the worst in the AFC last year.
Add in the fact that the franchise is a proverbial grease fire waiting to happen, and you have a sticky situation for McNabb to walk into.
Staying with the Redskins
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According to a report by Ryan O'Halloran of Comcast SportsNet Washington on Friday, the Redskins wouldn't get more than a "used kicking tee" in exchange for McNabb.
While that statement seems a little exaggerated, there is some semblance of merit to it.
McNabb will turn 35 during the 2011 season, one in which he is owed $12.5 million. To top it all off, he's coming off the worst season of his career. Many teams simply won't be giving up much for a QB that appears to be on the decline.
Therefore, the Redskins may try him again for one more year – vice starting John Beck – and see if he can rekindle the talents he had when he led the Eagles to seven playoff appearances.
This would not be of benefit to McNabb, who would rather be granted a release and a fresh start. If he's not released and stays in D.C., all the negativity will start to bubble up – especially if he struggles yet again.