Former NFL quarterback Donovan McNabb recently offered some pointed criticism of Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. And McNabb has been criticized for it.
And McNabb doesn’t care.
“The whole thing about it, a question was asked for me [and] these were my thoughts that I thought would be a benefit for he and his family,” McNabb told NFL Network. “Whatever people may feel about it, I could care less. But I figured it could help him in many ways.”
There it is. The “I was just answering a question” defense. Articulated on the same day I officially added it to my own personal list of pet peeves. Right behind the concept of jumbo shrimp.
McNabb explained that his comments came from a desire to be helpful, which makes him eligible to play Marie Barone if/when they bring back Everybody Loves Raymond.
“The whole thing about it for me is that I love to talk to the younger guys and just prepare them for what is in front of them,” McNabb said. “A lot of them are unaware and when things kind of happen, there is no one to kind of talk to them. I think from my 13 years of experience and watching football all my life, if you can give a helping hand, reach back and give these guys a little bit of guidance if you can, why not do it?”
He’s right, if the advice is given privately. The difference here is that McNabb, rebuffed in his efforts to get an audience with Griffin, opted to go public with his advice, which makes it come off as criticism. And which in turn sets McNabb up for criticism, especially from Redskins fans who at one point (but not for very long) cheered him.
McNabb still believes that Griffin shouldn’t view the criticism as criticism.
“This is something that has been going on since before I played football – guys sitting down with some of the younger guys to prepare them for what they will be faced with [and] also to talk a little bit about what is going on in his life, get to know him as a person,” McNabb said. “I am a fan of his. I have watched him, I have watched the young generation that is playing now. I have been a fan and love the game of football. I think anytime anyone can just give you anything. . . . Deion Sanders has been doing it, Michael Irvin has been doing it, so why can’t I sit and talk to the guy?”
If Griffin isn’t inclined to sit down and talk, that would be an impediment. And Griffin likely will be less inclined to do it, given the things McNabb said.
Look for Griffin to find a way to politely and tactfully decline. Of course, it would be better for media business if Griffin takes a shot at McNabb, and the back-and-forth between a pair of No. 2 overall picks escalates.