Donovan McNabb hasn’t found a team yet for the 2012 NFL season, and while quarterbacks do get injured quite often and an experienced guy to fill in of the pine is always welcomed, but it seems no one is really interested in the 35 year old, six time Pro Bowl selection.
The fact that he has no team and the fact that the last couple of seasons have been pretty bad (to be gentle) isn’t stopping McNabb from feeling confident about himself now, and about what he’s achieved in his career. During an interview, McNabb said he would vote himself into the hall of fame. His reason as to why might strike you as even weirder than the notion of McNabb in the hall of fame itself.
See, one thing that people don’t realize. I never played the game to make it to the Hall of Fame. I played the game because I love it. I played the game to win. I’m a competitor. When I step out on the field, I feel like I’m the best player on the field.
Even these last two years, when people may look at it and say, ‘Oh, he’s done, or whatever.’ I’m 34, 35 years old but still, I played at the pinnacle, I played at the highest level of my career. I played there. And I would vote for myself for the Hall of Fame.
McNabb compared himself to other quarterbacks in the hall of fame, or that will be there, like Peyton Manning. McNabb addressed the fact that he has better numbers than Troy Aikman, but he just doesn’t have his rings. And rings are the only thing that help hide a good, not outstanding career.
In terms of numbers, McNabb has played 13 years in the NFL, starting in 161 games, amassing a 98-62-1 record. He never led the league in any of the major quarterback passing categories. He made Six Pro Bowl selections, is 17th all time in passing yards, 22nd all time in passing touchdowns, 23rd in passer rating.
His only really impressive number is a 2.2% interception ratio, one of the lowest in the history of the NFL. But still, it’s not just about McNabb. It’s about the rules and traditions of the hall of fame, which hasn’t let in a quarterback since 2006. Last guys to make it? Warren Moon and Troy Aikman in 2006. Moon never won anything, but was an extraordinary passer, and a much more memorable player than McNabb.
Aikman is another case. He was in the right place at the right time. It always seemed that way to me. That Cowboys team that Jimmie Johnson and Jerry Jones built didn’t need a legendary quarterback to steer it. But he was there, and he did win three Super Bowls with the team, and like it or not, those rings mean a lot to voters.
McNabb won quite a lot, reached 5 NFC Championship games. But people remember those losses just as well as they remember how good he was. They remember these last two seasons, with the Redskins and getting cut by the Vikings, very well also. Maybe McNabb is just putting on a show, but I think if he’ll be honest with himself, he knows what people will prefer to remember.