Donovan McNabb remained willing to play the part of the loyal soldier when he was benched in favor of Christian Ponder this season. But losing Minnesota’s No. 2 quarterback job to Joe Webb led McNabb to seek his release.
Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com reports that McNabb, who had been running the scout team offense in practice, asked for his release after being informed he would be No. 3 on the depth chart for the rest of the season, starting Sunday against the Broncos.
In other words, three different coaches in the last 20 months have concluded that McNabb was the third-best quarterback on the roster: Andy Reid preferred both Kevin Kolb and Michael Vick, Mike Shanahan preferred both Rex Grossman and John Beck, and now Leslie Frazier has chosen both Ponder and Webb over McNabb.
It’s easy to see why McNabb wouldn’t want to be a third-stringer, but it’s also easy to see why Frazier would promote Webb above McNabb on the depth chart. The Vikings aren’t going anywhere this year, and Webb is a young guy with talent. If Ponder gets hurt late this year, it would make a lot more sense to see what Webb can do than to put McNabb back in for a few meaningless final games.
Vikings offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave said on Thursday that the coaching staff thinks highly of Webb and thinks he has a future as a quarterback in Minnesota. McNabb has no future in Minnesota, and the only question is whether he has any future anywhere.