A Giant Monday morning to you all!
And, of course, wishing Donovan McNabb a Happy Easter, though I am sure my well wishing falls well short of the warm holiday wishes extended by Iggles coach, Andy Reid, and the Eagles front office, to Donovan McNabb yesterday.
I imagine the conversation went something like this:
Andy Reid: Hi kids, can you put your dad on?
McNabb’s house: Andy? Happy Easter man, I can’t talk long, I have a ham in the oven that is just about ready and my wife is working on those potatoes you love, but I sure do appreciate the Easter call.”
Andy Reid: Oh, jeez Donovan, umm, Happy Easter, that is why I called…oh, and just so you know, I just traded you to the Washington Redskins, don’t worry about over-eating today, in fact, I always liked you with a little meat on your bones, you should add about 20lbs. Anyway, wishing you a Happy Easter, see you during the season, click…”
McNabb: Andy? Andy? F$$CK ___ piece of $%*&! Andy!!
All kidding aside, you have to figure that McNabb is happy at least to not have to worry about more and more job speculation, though the reason he will no longer have to deal with media inquiries about possible trades is because well, McNabb has been traded from the Eagles after 11 seasons, and after becoming the Eagles’ all-time leader in career wins, pass attempts, pass completions, passing yards, and passing touchdowns. Reports indicate that the Iggles received Washington’s 2nd round draft pick in this month’s draft (no. 37 overall) and a 3rd of 4th round pick in the 2011 draft, depending on McNabb’s performance with Washington.
First, the good news: McNabb is no longer an Eagle. Now, the bad news: McNabb will still face the Giants twice per year, or more, depending on playoff scenarios. Wow. The Eagles better be very confident that Kevin Kolb is the answer, not only is Kolb’s career now defined and compared to a sure-fire hall of fame quarterback, the Eagles will stay intimately in contact with Donovan twice per year when they play division rival Washington.
What does this mean for Washington?
I can’t hear myself think over the constant shouting from the D.C. area (no, it is not because the Washington Wizards have ended another horrific season). Washington finally has a quarterback, Jason Campbell is likely to be moved for a draft pick or two, whatever they can salvage for him as any leverage Washington might have had in a Jason Campbell deal went caput with the McNabb trade. And, Washington has to be strongly looking at an offensive tackle at no. 4 (think Russell Okung/Bryan Buluga/Trent Williams) or a trade down scenario where they can pick up an extra draft pick or two because the Skins clearly need to upgrade the offensive line (many holes to fill, starting at left tackle which is an open abyss after the off-season retirement of long-time stalwart, Chris Samuels).
My bet is McNabb struggles a bit behind a poor offensive line, none of Washington’s “name” running backs (Portis, L.J., or Parker) are going to take the load off of McNabb’s shoulders, and McNabb is not going to confuse Malcolm Kelly or Devin Thomas with DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin any time soon (though maybe Thomas starts to realize his potential this year). Washington does have an emerging tight end in Fred Davis and a pro bowl tight end in Chris Cooley, so the cupboard is not bare, and McNabb loves to rely on his tight end in the passing game (see Brent Celek). But McNabb is going to miss having a running back who can do damage out of the backfield in the passing game.
Also, does McNabb start to immediately angle for a big money extension? I have to think McNabb is going to leverage the Skins on this one and collect a handsome pot of guaranteed money from Richie Rich, i.e., Daniel Snyder.
NFC East Fallout:
Not a bad deal for Washington as far as compensation, Washington just needs to fix their porous offensive line, but easier said than done. Rumors indicate that the Redskins were willing to trade big Albert to the Iggles as part of the deal, but the Iggles didn’t want his contract, his baggage, his attitude, his complaining, or his added off-season lbs. Have to think the already shaky relationship with big Al and the Skins may get worse before it gets better.
But, here is where the Iggles lose: Even is Kolb, as a first year starter, is successful, puts up big numbers, leads the Iggles to the playoffs, and becomes what the Iggles envision: their new quarterback of the now and the future, the Iggles still have to play McNabb twice and if the Skins end up with a better record, return to the playoff, or are somehow, directly or indirectly responsible for pushing the Iggles out of the playoffs, Reid will be forced to this question: “Why would you ever trade Donovan McNabb to a division rival?” This part makes no sense to me when the Iggles could have shipped McNabb to the NFL Siberia, the Oakland Raiders. This one could and likely will come back to bit the Iggles, which is nice.
Tom Coughlin’s face just became a little brighter shade of red with the McNabb trade news, but really nothing changes here for the G-men other than the NFC East just got a whole lot more competitive. The onus is still on Jerry Reese to fix the defense, for Perry Fewell to dial up the right schemes to revive the pass rush, and for Osi Umeniyora, Justin Tuck, and Mathias Kiwanuka to remind everyone why Giants brass did not panic with the retirement of Michael Strahan.
On another front, apparently Easter Sunday was not kind to the Barber household with news that Tiki and the W are separating after 11 years of marriage (and so are the Eagles and McNabb, also after 11 years of marriage). All kidding aside, we have forgiven Tiki for his inappropriate, inaccurate, and just flat out wrong comments and criticism of Eli Manning and Coach Tom Coughlin. We don’t celebrate people’s personal misfortunes, so our thoughts are with the Barber family this morning. But, we can’t help think about the precipitous fall of Barber post-retirement: Here is a guy who was slated to be a network anchor star/personality and it just hasn’t happened. Barber retired a year too early, missing out on a Super Bowl ring and Giant immortality. In every life, a little rain must fall.