Donovan McNabb's 5-Year Extension: Today's WTF Moment


The last time Donovan McNabb played in an NFL game, he was benched in favor of Rex Grossman, against a team that has won exactly four games in the past two-and-a-half seasons. Now, today, McNabb is apparently receiving a five-year contract extension that will pay him a guaranteed $40 million.

That must have been one hell of a bye week. What was he doing, throwing precise 90-yard bombs? Running 4.1 40s? Healing everyone's concussions? Uniting Democrats and Republicans and erasing the national debt? Seriously, WHAT THE FUCK DID HE DO?!

I mean, really, I've put up with some stupid shit from the Redskins over the years (and I have the Heath Shuler, Michael Westbrook and Deion Sanders jerseys to prove it), but this is a special kind of stupid. The timing of the extension -- fresh off McNabb's benching and the bitch-fest between him and coach Mike Shanahan -- is bad enough, but the reality of the situation makes it so much worse.

Yes, the Redskins are improved from last year, there's no denying that fact. But it's not like McNabb is lighting things up. He ranks 28th in the league in passer rating (who leads that category? Umm... how about the guy who replaced him in Philadelphia, Michael Vick.), 15th in passing yards, 26th in passing touchdowns (tied with among others, the man HE replaced, Jason Campbell) and 18th in yards per attempt. In multiple key categories, McNabb is putting up his worst numbers since his rookie season, when he only started six games.

Toss on top of that the fact that McNabb is already 34 years old, so when this extension kicks in, he'll be 35 and when it runs out (assuming Washington hasn't already cut him by then, which they're likely to have done) he'll be 39. It's not unheard of for a quarterback McNabb's age to have a good season or two.  23 different quarterbacks in NFL history have started 12 games and posted a passer rating of 85.0 or better (about McNabb's career average) at 35 or older. But the Redskins are signing on for FIVE of those seasons, something NO ONE has ever done (John Elway came close, doing it in each of his last four seasons before retiring on top). And they're doing it with a quarterback who is already showing signs of age, while also signed on with a coach who's already clashed with that same quarterback. I'm not going to sit here and hope that McNabb goes from Trent Edwards (career passer rating of 75.8) to Kurt Warner (one of the most successful 35+ QBs in NFL history).

Putting it simply, it's shit like this that makes it hard for me to continue being a Redskins fan. This kind of wanton disregard for the evidence in front of everyone's eyes has been going on for more than a decade. This extension might have made sense coming from the Eagles, rewarding McNabb for his years of service, but not from Washington, where he's won exactly four games. Hell, even Patrick Ramsey did that.

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