Philadelphia Eagles News

Experts Debate Decision To Keep McNabb In Division

The news that Donovan McNabb was traded probably did not come as a shock to many fans. The decision to send McNabb to a division rival - well, that's a different story altogether.

Head coach Andy Reid emphatically said over and over again Sunday night that the compensation from the Redskins made their offer the best one for all parties involved. However, Reid did admit that the trade instantly made the Redskins a better football team.

Did the Eagles make a mistake in trading McNabb to a division rival? NFL.com's experts weighed in. And the four analysts were unanimous in the belief that the Eagles made the right call.

Future Hall of Fame running back Marshall Faulk, who was traded in the midst of his prime, said, "I don't think they made a mistake. For the Eagles, you would think trading him within the NFC East is risky. But, what you're starting to see - like the Brett Favre situation - is that when you have a player with one year left on his contract, you might as well get as much as you can for him because he might find his way back to where he wants to go.

""The Eagles have always been smart and have made the right decisions almost every time when it comes to letting veterans go. The Eagles are young, and there's no better time to let Kevin Kolb show everyone he can lead the team. The Eagles probably got as much as they could have from the Redskins because they are a division rival. You never trade worried about the other team, you trade worrying about your team."

Former Eagle Brian Baldinger was very critical of McNabb's skills in his assessment of the trade.

"The Eagles should be ecstatic," Baldinger said. "I view McNabb as a flawed player, and it was never more apparent than in the back-to-back losses to the Cowboys last season. His flaws will never go away. Now, the Eagles get at least two chances to expose the same flaws they've been covering up for 11 years."

Insider Jason La Canfora said it took "guts" for the Eagles to make the move, but in reality it's a win-win for both teams.

"It's solid compensation for a player the Eagles were not going to extend long-term," La Canfora said. "And in trading McNabb, the Eagles did solid by the guy who has been the face of the franchise for over a decade, sending him to a locale and coach with whom he is comfortable. It could very well be that, similar to the Green Bay/Brett Favre parting, Kevin Kolb is very much a worthy successor, and McNabb, like Favre, goes on to shine as well."

Solmon Wilcots augmented La Canfora's sentiment by stating that the Eagles honored McNabb for his 11 years of service by sending him to the Redskins.

""The Eagles know that trading him in the NFC East is not the best thing for them," Wilcots said. "But other than giving him a long-term deal, keeping him another season and paying his roster bonus, it was the one bone they could throw his way. They put him on a team with a coach who runs a system similar to what he's done his whole career. McNabb is a potential Hall of Famer, and he'll always be an Eagle.

"If the Eagles feared McNabb, they wouldn't have made this trade."

-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 10:55 a.m., April 6

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