Andy Reid said on Monday that "when it's all said and done (Donovan McNabb) will be worthy" of a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
On Wednesday, McNabb turned 33 years old and, of course, he was asked about his head coach's remark. McNabb decided to use the opportunity to stump for Eagles great Harold Carmichael to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
"You can't take away the body of work of any individual who's played in any sport," McNabb said. "Everybody looks and focuses so much on numbers, they can take whatever opinion they want from it. I know one guy that should be in the Hall of Fame who's not and that's Harold Carmichael. There is a lot more to go into making the Hall of Fame than just one person saying, 'He should be (in the) Hall of Fame.' "
Carmichael is the franchise's all-time leader in receptions (589), receiving yards (8,978) and total touchdowns (79). A four-time Pro Bowl selection, Carmichael finished his career ranked sixth all-time in receptions. The proliferation of passing offenses in the last 25 years has overshadowed Carmichael's accomplishments.
As for McNabb, he is the franchise's all-time leader in every major statistical category. He's 30th in NFL history in yards (31,249), 25th in touchdown passes (208) and 17th in QB rating (86.4). He holds the all-time league record for lowest interception percentage (2.1 percent) and is second all-time in TD/INT ratio. He also has the NFL record for most consecutive completions (24).
In terms of results, McNabb has the third-best winning percentage among active quarterbacks (.641). He has won nine postseason games, including an NFC Championship.
However, McNabb doesn't have the elusive Super Bowl ring. In his one opportunity, he threw for 357 yards (the fourth-most in the championship game's history) and had three touchdown passes (only five quarterbacks have ever had more in a single Super Bowl). However, McNabb was intercepted three times. Only five quarterbacks have thrown more picks in a single Super Bowl.
But does McNabb need a ring to be in the Hall of Fame? Of the 23 quarterbacks from the modern era in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, there are six who did not win either a league championship or a Super Bowl. Technically, it should be seven since Sonny Jurgensen was the backup to Norm Van Brocklin on the Eagles' 1960 championship team.
Nonetheless, McNabb realizes that it shouldn't take a ring to be recognized as one of the game's all-time greats.
"I don't think with any player you have to win the Super Bowl or World Championship to make it into the Hall of Fame," McNabb said. "Again, it goes back to your body of work and how effective you were for your team and how much of a threat you were playing against other teams, how teams game planned and tried to stop you, how teams feared the talents that you presented to them. I think there is a lot that goes into it. Dan Marino and a bunch of other players, I think Fran Tarkenton didn't win a Super Bowl, but they are still Hall of Famers. It's the things that you were able to do out on the field and so much of a threat that you were when you were out there to impose on the defense that really speak volumes."
Of course, McNabb's resume isn't complete. Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway didn't win his first Super Bowl until he was 37. Certainly, McNabb doesn't have to wait that long. McNabb doesn't even know if he'll be playing four years from now. If he is, he would "love" to still be playing in Philadelphia.
"(If at) 38, 39 years old if I'm still playing I would love for it to be here, if I'm still playing," McNabb said. "But, I wouldn't see myself being anywhere but here in Philadelphia. I love it here, and I think we can do some great things here."
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 6:45 p.m., November 25