Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb took a not so thinly-veiled shot at his defensive teammates, pinning blame on them for the NFC title game loss to the Arizona Cardinals, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
During a WIP radio interview, McNabb’s response to a question about why the Eagles couldn’t respond offensively after the Cardinals’ touchdown in the final minutes suggested that the defense was at fault for squandering a slight lead.
“We were up, 25-24,” McNabb said, per the Inquirer. “We were up, 25-24. [The Cardinals] drove down 72 yards by running the ball — probably, what, eight times? And it reminded me so much of [the NFC championship game in] St. Louis where, coming back in that second half, they ran the ball nine times with Marshall Faulk to keep our offense off the field. Because they were terrified of us going back out and scoring more points.”
McNabb, whose leadership has been questioned over the years, will have some fences to mend after this one, in the opinion of former Eagles defensive end Hugh Douglas.
“Some people will say it’s not a big deal, but it is,” Douglas said. “When you break that team code, it hits home. When you call someone your teammate, you’re calling them your brother. Be loyal to your teammates. It’s easy to point fingers. Brian Dawkins is a team player. He would never do that.
“I know Donovan. I respect Donovan. In his mind, he didn’t say anything wrong. But a leader thinks before he speaks. That would never come out of a leader’s mouth. Every year, Donovan says something that’s inflammatory, then he doesn’t explain himself. Explain yourself. When you alienate people who have your back, I need to understand why. I need to understand how he thinks. Right now, I don’t.” 
Bottom line: McNabb could have handled the question a lot better. Time will tell whether this one has the legs to become a full-blown Philadelphia controversy, but my hunch is this will blow over without causing a major disruption in the locker room.


  1. “I want to end my career in Philly.”
    “Our defense sucks.”
    Quit now and have it all your way.
    But if McNabb goes to minnehaha…. favre can go to philly!
    all ya need is favre!

  2. Donovan is becoming the Amy Whitehouse of the NFL. Every week there’s at least one story about them even though there are much more interesting stories and 90% of the world could care less. Let me know when McNabb finally gets traded or when Amy finally ODs…

  3. Am I mistaking or didn’t Donovan have the ball in his hands at the end of the game with a chance to at least tie it up and threw four straight incompletions to end the game?
    What an over rated QB. He has decent numbers but he won’t win the big one, simple as that.

  4. McNabb is right, but you don’t say it in public. He’s treading on some dangerous territory right now, calling out the defense that has played outstanding almost all year and carried this team through the playoffs.

  5. No, come on. Controversy. Don’t take this, Philly D. Run McNabb out of town! and into Minnesota’s waiting arms.

  6. Maybe if Mcnabb was able to throw the ball with any accuracy on that last drive they’d have been able to come back. He was missing throws all day.

  7. McNabb is quite possibly the biggest cry baby in all of sports. How many times has he choked in clutch situations? How many years did the Eagles D carry them into the playoffs only to have McNabb blow big games? Maybe this one time the defense could have played better and cost them the game, but how about McNabb go out and save them like they have done for him so many times?

  8. McNabb is worse than TO…
    TO is immature and spoiled…
    McNabb is a calculated sociopath.
    If I were an Eagles fan (which I am not), I’d sacrifice a few winning seasons while they break in Kolb as opposed to dealing with another season full of McNabb’s BS!

  9. Philly Defense was tired and throwing up in the huddle.
    It had nothing to do with Mcwusses scared passes he threw in the final drive.
    He should blame the receivers too for not catching those passes that were 15ft over there head..
    McNabb represents the eagles perfectly,Never win a super bowl and complain and whine about everybody else.

  10. Am I missing something? What did he say that wasn’t right? I don’t think it’s a slight to say what happened. The Cardinals ran the ball on that drive, and burned a lot of clock (same as the Rams back in the day).
    I had hoped the Eagles could’ve been more productive on the final drive…but it didn’t happen.

  11. patspsycho says:
    February 4th, 2009 at 10:42 am
    Come on Florio, why do I have to put up with stomach fat reading this while eating breakfast?
    Firefox + Ad Blocker Plus = No Stomach Fat Ads
    I had no idea there were any ads on this site at all. Change browsers and be happy!

  12. McNabb had 375 yds, 3 td and 1 int (plus 31 yds rushing, compared to Westbrooks’ 45)… where do people get off blaming him for this loss? And he wasn’t taking a shot at the defense, he was explaining that he couldn’t put together a winning drive b/c there was so little time left after the cards drove the length of the field while keeping the clock running. I’m so sick of our d-bag media here in Philly; I’ll be canceling my Inquirer subscription.

  13. to hear don’s version of events, one would think that the cards scored with the clock on zero, instead of with almost three minutes left.
    if i recall correctly, both teams in the super bowl got the ball in pretty much the same situation as don did after the cardinals scored in the nfc championship game. getting the ball at 2:57, warner got the cardinals into the end zone in 20 seconds. then, ben took the steelers at 2:37 and won the game. don had the opportunity to do this against arizona. instead, he blames the defense. i just wish someone would point out to don that this is the difference between himself and the qbs with a ring. they don’t exempt themselves from the responsibility to overcome obstacles. they just overcome them.
    if the entire team had played to the level of the defense this season, it would have been 12-4 or 13-3. the offense, on the other hand played about 8-8. the d has carried this team most (not all) of the seasons mcnabb has been in philly.
    this is not the first time don has minimized the contributions of dawk and the defense, while exaggerating his own. but on the upside, these guys already know what don’s agenda is, so this isn’t going to change anything.
    don’t extend him, jeffrey, joe and andy. use the money to address the players who sell out every week, all season. get a top tier wideout, a blocking tight end and fullback, and a big back.

  14. Man, you don’t do that. Every workplace has the asshole who throws his coworkers under the bus. Nobody likes that guy.
    Especially when you’re the big shot, you take responsibility. Period. What do you care more, how the radio-listening public thinks of you, or how your teammates think of you?
    Any leader gets more out of his people when they know he has their back. Be it the workplace, sports, military, whatever. A leader like Elway, for instance. You’d never see him do crap like this.

  15. In most cases I’d agree. But this is Donovan McNabb… who has taken the majority of the blame for EVERYTHING.
    At some point, you gotta get tired of it.
    Philly would absolutely suck without McNabb. IMO, he’s carried that team… he’s carried them to, what, 5 NFC championships? And he’s done it with little to no help at the WR position, and with a 3rd down back for a running back.
    And in this case, he’s not lying… the strength of Philly is the defense. He led a hellova comeback to take the lead, and the defense let the worst rushing team in the league run the ball down their throats.
    How did you want Donovan to answer that question?

  16. What is the slight? That he said Arizona ran the ball to keep the Eagles O off the field?
    C’mon…….this parsing every word out of McNabb’s mouth for controvery is getting ridiculous.

  17. Nice. It’ll blow over because no Philly reporter will ask anybody about it a million times until he gets the answer he wants or one that he can spin negatively. Come to think of it, that describes just about everyone that’s been employed by the Dallas Morning News and/or ESPN in the last 10 years or so.

  18. hey Donovan if you’re gonna try to code everything you say maybe you should have busted out the ”S My D”
    but in all seriousness I think what he’s really trying to say to his teammates and philly fans is ”F-ck you guys. Ill be sure to thank you all when Im accepting My championship ring in 2010…Later, Bitches”…”Ohh and if someone could give me a lift to the airport that would be super. I’ve got a flight to the midwest to catch.”

  19. “McNabb is quite possibly the biggest cry baby in all of sports”
    Now now he’s an amateur compared to LT.

  20. I’m sure it will be spun as McNabb actually being a leader and thus calling out his team so as to use reverse psychology to get them to play better. However, I am also sure that’s not how he intended it and most likely he just felt that it was more important to get his opinion out, while at the same time both throwing his defense under the bus as well as, and more importantly, deflecting focus from his utterly atrocious first half. Typical Donovan!

  21. bavaro89 says:
    February 4th, 2009 at 10:38 am
    Donovan is becoming the Amy Whitehouse of the NFL. Every week there’s at least one story about them even though there are much more interesting stories and 90% of the world could care less. Let me know when McNabb finally gets traded or when Amy finally ODs…
    Who in the hell is Amy Whitehouse??

  22. I think the comment was pointing out that the Cardinals running the ball took time off the clock, non-issue.

  23. Code Schmode. The defense blew the game and the Eagles don’t run the ball nearly enough. McNabb killed two birds (Reid and the D) with one stone, pun intended.

  24. You lost, chunky soup-ass, because you can’t hit the broadside of a barn with your passes. That last drive you had wide open receivers and you missed them time after time…..

  25. It’s really sad to see Donovan keep deflecting responsibility. Did he forget that Desean bailed him out when he threw an INT in the first half? Otherwise game probably is over by the half. Sometimes Donovan needs to bail his defense out after they bailed him out the whole season.
    But the bigger problem in Philly is Andy Reid. He needs to reduce his role. He has too much control for a guy who hasn’t won a single SB. I have seen numerous clock management problems with Tubby Reid.
    I hate to admit it, but I think mcNabb will rarely be the clutch artist. He seems to become emotionally weaker with age. It didn’t help that his one truly elite WR in his career was a traitor. McNabb still has the skills to lead a decent enough offense to win a SB, but don’t count on him for a comeback in the final minutes of a game.

  26. I like how he says that the Cards were “terrified” of the Eagles offense coming back on the field…this is the funniest thing I ever heard. Yea they were real terrified of all the passes thrown behind guys or at their feet. Im sure they got real scared when Greg Lewis dropped that bomb that landed right in his bread basket.

  27. overreaction by all of you.
    donovan answered a question he was asked, he didn’t volunteer the information. the fact is the Eagles were winning when McNabb left the field. Arizona DID run the ball like 8 times on the following drive. the Eagles defense couldn’t stop the Arizona running game.
    this is all fact, donovan was just reciting what happened. you expect him to take the blame for letting arizona score?
    i’m irritated with hearing about McNabb as much as the next guy, but let’s be realistic here. this is a non-story.

  28. This is what McNabb has been doing for 10 years. When you want him to open his mouth and say “hey, get me more weapons on offense”…his mouth stays shut. But then he’ll go on the radio and say things like he did about the defense. Or like when he says “I hate to bring up the benching but….” well duh you dummy….you just brought it up. I think McNabb is a real good QB, but he needs to grow up. And Fat Momma McNabb’s mouth doesn’t help the situation either. Donovan Lindros.

  29. Mcnabb played one of the worst first half I have ever seen, he could have thrown for 300 yards and got a few TD but he was inaccurate, he finally started hitting his wr and then they start to score but they wasted so much energy coming back in game and with only 9 mins left in a 1 pt game anything can happen, Mcnabb is a good player but hes not worth all the trouble.

  30. Hugh – Your dead wrong on this – It’s about time McNabb states he needs talent to win a game. A he never has a WR and marches on; the eagles need a studd LB on defense and WR on offense; so just maybe now, if McNabb starts opening his mouth, it might happen.
    He is right, the “D” should have stepped up, instead of backed down..

  31. I have no problems with what he said.
    Call a spade a spade.
    It was completely obvious that there was a terrible scheme in the 1st half of that game… have you ever seen the Eagles with such a Read style defense??? Then they play their normal D in the 2nd half and allow just 1 TD. Granted, it was the most-important TD, but still the root of the problem was the 1st half scheme which was just exposed for the pansy-ass scheme it was.

  32. All these guys like Hugh Douglas, Ike Reese, and Trotter are trying to act like DMac is the rotten teammate that throws everyone under the bus, but these so called ‘leaders’ all turned into Stevie Wonder when TO was pulling his crap on McNabb a few years ago; even though they knew that TO didn’t have a legit beef with McNabb, it was just the best thorn he could stick in the front offices side.No one talkes about how small the Eagles D has come up in Chamiopnship games; lets just say their performance against the Rams, Bucs, Panthers, and Cards doesn’t remind you of the ’85 bears.

  33. Somebody said leaders are born.
    Somebody else said you can learn to be a leader.
    I don’t know which one is true.
    But I do agree with Bill Parcells you can ‘t have
    a Clown as a QB if you want to win a

  34. look to the other side of pennsylvania, if the steelers hadn’t scored on their own last drive against the cards, would anyone hear roethlisberger effectively calling out his D for losing the game?
    the amount of times mcnabbs been bailed out by that defense over the years. he conveniently overlooks the fact he had a chance to put a drive of his own together at the end and failed at it

  35. This is nothing compared to how I heard him throw his defense under the bus in his postgame presser. I couldn’t believe it. Well yes I was drama queen, deflect responsibility Donnie Mac. He plays about one good quarter and has the nerve to call anyone else out? No he isn’t a leader, leaders don’t EVER throw teammates under the bus in the media like he does constantly, and they don’t act like diva WRs and grab phones of the opposing team’s on the sidelines as an IN YOUR FACE gesture.

  36. Hmmmmmmmmmm – much like St. Louis ran the ball 8 times because they were terrified of the Eagles offense coming back on the field and scoring points. What a ludicrous statement! Every team would love to control the ball and score with minimal time left no matter whose offense they are playing against. You idiot!
    He missed passes all day – which put them behind – then gets the ball at the end of the game, pretty much like Ben just did in the Super Bowl. The difference is they didn’t score and the Steelers did (I’m a Browns fan so wish McNabb had been the Steelers QB). McNabb cannot produce the results top quarterbacks produce when the game is on the line. So I guess blaming the defense is the route to go?
    This guy is not a team leader. Statements like this prove it. Nothing is ever his fault. Maybe the ole T.O. was right?

  37. McNabb is an asshole.
    It’s the defense fault.
    What are ties?
    We lost, but I know who the better team is. You know, not the Redskins even though they handed us our asses twice.

  38. If I were McNabb I’d be keeping my mouth shut until my contract gets redone. Even if you are pissed at the D it would’ve beeen wise to hold your tongue. Whats stirring the pot going to do at this point?!
    I love McNabb as a QB. The 1 year he had a legit #1 receiver they went to the Bowl.
    Sign a GOOD receiver PHILLY!!!!!!

  39. I think he was crediting the Cardinals for moving the ball and scoring more than he was slighting the Eagles D. Boy, people want to run this guy out of town and if they do they will really be sorry.

  40. He was drunk when he said it – you should listen to the audio –
    Later on in the evening, he was telling local reporters that he was “enjoying himself / having a few drinks” and didn’t want to say something he would regret…”
    He knew, or was told by his handlers, that he screwed up, and was trying to avoid it. I’m sure it will get brought up, and he will play it off, but it definitely was a punk thing to say.
    If I’m in his shoes, I definitely feel that way, but I don’t dare sell out BDawk and the D (who got them to the game almost by themselves)

  41. He knows full well what he said will anger someone. He obviously wants OUT of Philly plain and simple.

  42. McNabb never comes through in the clutch. Period. That’s the bottom line and he proves it time and time again. He might pile up stats in the 2nd and 3rd quarter, but when he gets the ball back with 3 minutes left at the end of the game, I have no confidence in him.
    Guys with inferior stats to his, like Big Ben or Troy Aikman, are 10 times the QB he is because you can count on them at the end of the game to clutch up and get it done.
    Hell, even some guys like Kyle Orton have more of that clutch factor in them than Donovan does.

  43. Inept_guy says:
    February 4th, 2009 at 10:53 am
    McNabb is quite possibly the biggest cry baby in all of sports. How many times has he choked in clutch situations? How many years did the Eagles D carry them into the playoffs only to have McNabb blow big games? Maybe this one time the defense could have played better and cost them the game, but how about McNabb go out and save them like they have done for him so many times?
    Uh, that is one way of looking at it. The Eagles D was not good this year. They had good stretches and were good at the end of the season but they did not “carry the team”. Looking back through history, the Eagles defense lost the St. Louis game, the Superbowl, and the Arizona game. Yes, the offense did have the ball at the end of the game (after scoring 3 consecutive TDs). Yes, the first couple of throws were not great. But he made the 4th down throw. Perfect throw. Catch it and step out and stop the clock. problem is, again, that we do not have recievers that can catch.
    I watched the spurerbowl. Guess what, both teams threw bad passes but the get hidden by recievers and tight ends that can catch.
    People want McNabb to show some fire. Then complain when he tells the truth. How come when Marino would call out his offensive line in public, he was a great leader? McNabb was asked – how do you respond to people saying that you are incapable of bringing a team back and he said – I did we were down and then the other team ran the ball down aour throats to keep us off the field. TRUE.
    If he was really throwing people under the bus he would have said – maybe if Dawkins didn;t keep bouncing off of Larry Fitz, we would have been better. Or, maybe if we had a running back capable of sustaining a drive, we could have ran the clock out on my last TD drive.

  44. Hey andyreid, congrats on the Eagles winning the Bowl — you know, the Steelers were only playing for the right to lose to them, remember?
    Sure you do.

  45. Can someone remind D-Mac that his ailing defensive coordinator is fighting cancer.
    That same coordinator has been the sole reason McNabb even has a job.

  46. Along with McPoop, I understand Andy Reid wants a contract extension.
    I’ve been an Iggles fan since 1946. Let them go!! 10 Years and no Super Bowl. Let’s see what Kolb has and get someone else to coach the team, not Andy Roly Poly Reid.

  47. McNabb doesn’t have his job because Jim Johnson is our Defensive coordinator (BTW – my thoughts and prayers out to JJ through this difficult time): that’s preposterous. You could say the same thing about any QB in the league that’s ever had a game where the D did more than the O to win.
    I’ll also argue that he is a clutch QB, because he has orchestrated drives in several games this season alone to put the team in a position to win:
    1) Chicago – 2 terrible running attempts at the 1 in the 4th quarter cost us the game. McNabb got us there.
    2) Redskins, the following week – ditto. We burned the ‘skins with the pass, then LJ Smith whiffed on a huge block, and Westbrook got thrown for a loss on 4th and goal from the 1.
    3) Cards game – we were down 24-6 because of missed field goals and a D that was unable to stop a mixed run/pass ratio during the first half, and looked downright pathetic for 3 out of 4 quarters. DMac threw 3 TDs in the 3rd and 4th to put the team in a position to win. Don’t forget the TD pass that was dropped by Lewis.
    4) Giants playoff game – we had a slight lead over the reigning SB champs, and we had 3rd and 21 inside the 10. McNabb hit Avant for 24, and the game was effectively over.
    5) Minnesota – same idea, our O Line was perforated the entire game, but McNabb made laser throws that got us out of terrible position, and lined up the win.
    6) Redskins (2nd time) – the last offensive play of the game, McNabb completes a pass to Brown at the 2, which was a high throw because BROWN was supposed to be in the end zone (duh). Our receivers also dropped 2 sure TDs that game, because the passes unfortunately hit them in the hands.
    That’s 6 games in one season, four of which were losses because of plays that weren’t executed by other members of the team. How is he not “clutch”?
    McNabb’s performance in the NFCCG was roughly equivalent to Warner’s in the Super Bowl: how many “Warner isn’t a clutch QB” reports/comments are there out there? At least McNabb’s turnovers in the NFCCG didn’t result in a 14 point swing, and they sure didn’t happen on the final drive.
    Yeah, McNabb does sometimes make the mistakes of answering the questions that he’s asked.

  48. Since the Thanksgiving Day game that Eagles defense allowed 95 points(not inc. safety vs. NYG) in 7 games or just 13.5 points per game.

  49. In my humble opinion….And I’m not gonna be humble about it at ALL…McNabb should shut the hell up til he wins something….I’m sick of the Eagles organization coddling his ass……This just in Donovan…YOU HAVEN’T WON A DAMN THING AS A STARTING QB ON THE SAME TEAM FOR 10 YEARS….Many of those years the D carried your ass….Just shut the hell up..

  50. @vidiotz
    all those times where they failed going for short yardage runs; ever thought if anyone had any confidence that mcnabb could make it he might actually get the ball?

  51. Frank Burns: Harrison was down on the one. Holmes didnt have two feet down. Holmes should have been flagged 15 yards for the Lebron impersonation. Three straight personal fouls on the Cards when the Steelers were stopped on third down. Roughing the holder? Harrison should have been ejected. Warner didnt fumble. It was never even reviewed. Wisenhunt had 2 correct challenges that were called on the field in favor of the Steelers……….Seeing any patterns?

  52. @hawkfist
    Actually, McNabb’s rushing TD’s came from 1yd sneaks that were called after all the short yardage failings. McNabb’s success rate at converting goal to go at the 1 was higher than both Westbrook and Buckhalter. So, the Eagles did try QB sneaks after the debacles in Chicago and against the Skins, and the sneaks worked (case in point – Giants playoff game).
    You also don’t address short routes being run by receivers or dropped passes that are in the hands of the receivers, both of which cost us games. I’m not saying that McNabb is exempt from any blame, his Cinci and Ravens performances were bad, he really didn’t light it up against the Skins (although I also think that’s partially due to our undersized receivers inability to get off the jam or separate in man 2 man), and he had some bad throws in the Cardinals game in the first half (and on the final drive).
    I just think there’s a misconception about what constitutes clutch, and that it takes more than one player to orchestrate a drive like the Steelers had at the Super Bowl. What would Ben have done if Holmes wasn’t getting separation on his routes, or if he didn’t make a magnificent catch in the end zone? What would Ben have done if Arizona kept up the pressure that they’d been getting on the previous drives? Would that mean that Ben isn’t a clutch player? Is Warner not a clutch QB because he got his team the lead late in the 4th, yet the team still lost?

  53. vidiotz, thank you for your posts. These people drive me crazy.
    My main problem with the Eagles is the GM not providing the correct players and starting seasons with glaring holes and also the coaches refusal to change his system based on the players he has.
    McNabb has done a good job of fitting in but Andy’s system is not a perfect fit for his skills. So yes, Andy, you do need to put your players in a better position to win. Andy thinks his system transcends weather.
    In Cincy, McNabb was off BUT there were other issues. 1. There was high wind. 2. There were no healthy RBs on the team. 3. Everyone in the stadium knew it was going to be a pass – ON WEVERY DOWN. i do not think any QB with the WRs we have would have been able to overcome these odds.
    I would like to see a study done on how many times the defense has given up a game losing touchdown. People in Philly, me included, love defense. But do they have to love it so much that they have blinders on? The defense since Andy and Jim Jim Johnson have never carried the team on a consistent basis. People who think that are delusional and basically just want to hate McNabb.
    I also have never seen any team rely on one player the way the Eagles put everything on McNabb – he is basically their team… And should not be – when he has a bad game – take the pressure off with a running back (not Westbrook – a carry the load guy). Maybe the Cavs rely on LeBron like that but it is a different game.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.