News flash — some/most/all NFL coaches fracture the truth from time to time.
The latest example? A day after unleashing what appeared to be a prepared-in-advance explanation for benching quarterback Donovan McNabb (i.e., Rex Grossman is better suited to run the two-minute offense), Redskins coach Mike Shanahan now says that McNabb was benched because he’s not in good enough shape.
(Maybe he should have been required to do the conditioning test, too.)
Specifically, Shanahan said McNabb couldn’t handle the pace of the offense from a “cardiovascular standpoint.”
The phrase conjures images of the Eagles’ plodding two-minute offense in Super Bowl XXXIX, which was followed by reports and accounts of McNabb being tired to the point at which he vomited. (McNabb continues to deny any and all losing of lunches.) Only 15 days ago, we saw another curiously slow late-game effort from McNabb, when the Redskins needed two scores against the Colts.
The truth very well may be that the cardiovascular excuse is far closer to being the truth than the idea that that Grossman was better versed in the two-minute offense, especially since Moss has a hamstring injury and a shin injury. But the shifting stories won’t help Shanahan or his relationship with McNabb.
Maybe in the end Shanahan will simply waive him. As we’ve seen today, stranger things have happened.