My sports publicist friend Jimmy Shapiro (never met him, exchanged email) sent me a link to ESPN Chicago’s interview with Donovan McNabb, who might still be quarterback of the Washington Redskins. McNabb is in his hometown Chicago for a two-day blowout birthday celebration.
Spoiler alert: McNabb says nothing about Mike or Kyle Shanahan or what direction he hopes to drive his career in 2011. Not speaking out is a virtue, says McNabb.
“…I may be the most criticized guy for not saying anything, but I think the whole thing about it is when the whistle blows and we’re in the facility and I’m working and preparing myself my teammates know what I’m able to give em and know that I’m putting that time and effort into it. I can’t control the way people may feel nor will I exert any more energy than I do on the field to try to change the minds of the people off the field.”
McNabb did not swallow the bait to add to the Redskins controversy. Asked about his approach the this offseason and his peculiar status with the Redskins, or comments by John Beck and Rex Grossman who hope to replace him as ‘Skins starter, McNabb says he spent his time honing his craft.
“You know what the situation is what it is right now and I’m taking this time right now to get myself in great shape go back to the fundamentals, work on your drop, work on your footwork, work on ball placement, things of that nature to be better at your craft. I think that’s the most important thing at this given time for all players is not just to sit around and take vacations. This is the time for you to go back to the basics.”
Old school and middle class McNabb isn’t a big fan of pro players watching a game at home who nit-tweet about players who are struggling in that game. “We area all in a fraternity” says he. McNabb cautions that that player, mad, will come after your team next game and “blast it out of the water.”
McNabb suspects that teams are secretly working out players, though he could not point to anything specific to suggest that is the case. It’s more in how it comes off to him.
ESPN Chicago did not ask whether McNabb’s workout with former Philadelphia Eagles teammates was a stealth workout. It’s highly unlikely that the Eagles would bring him back, but would have been a great interview question.
I’m mildly surprised that radio interviewers Waddle and Silvy didn’t ask McNabb for his thoughts about the Minnesota Vikings, widely speculated as McNabb’s next team. it seems a natural question for a Chicago audience.
McNabb has surfaced in several spots lately, including a video for a Seahawks player and that practice story out of Philadelphia. So maybe he will pop up on a DC area outlet like ESPN 980 “Redskins Radio” or CSN Washington, which seems to be an official broadcasting partner of the Washington Redskins. John Riggins is attending McNabb’s birthday bash, so maybe Dono will be on Riggo’s show next week.
McNabb remains on Washington’s contract for the moment and Redskins Radio is a Dan Snyder-owned company. An appearance by McNabb on that channel could be awkward to say the least, but would be most listened-to Redskins interview of the offseason.