Donovan McNabb will play at Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday as the enemy for the first time in his career. Still, he said Tuesday that he expects a mostly warm reception from Philadelphia Eagles fans.
McNabb, traded to the Washington Redskins by the Eagles in the offseason, is preparing to play his former team for the first time.
“Honestly, I think I will be more cheered,” McNabb said on his weekly appearance on ESPN-980 in Washington. “No matter what the situation is, right now I’m with a different team and it’s a rival and it wasn’t my choice. We had a successful 11 years. We had a lot of exciting plays and obviously some down times, but there were more exciting things in 11 years.”
McNabb said in the interview that he hasn’t yet thought about how he will feel when he takes the field.
“I truly haven’t,” he said. “Everyone else that I’ve talked to has and rightly so. I’ve been on the other side of the tide with other guys who have come in, Brian Dawkins, Troy Vincent and the list goes on, Jeremiah Trotter …
“I think in this situation, I’ll be open-minded at what happens … Everyone wants to know how I feel, my emotions. I really can’t answer that. Right now, it’s just focusing on playing against the Philadelphia Eagles. I would have an answer for you during the game about my emotions and how I felt during the game. I’m all in here in Washington and looking forward to turning things around.”
Vick was named the starter after a stellar Week 2 performance against the Lions, and followed that up with another spectacular showing in Week 3 vs. the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The Redskins are coming off two weeks to forget, blowing a 17-point, second-half lead in an overtime loss to the Houston Texans in Week 2 and falling to the St. Louis Rams in Week 3 as rookie Sam Bradford recorded his first NFL win.
“I’ve always said that I look at it just like a normal game,” McNabb said. “This is a game the Washington Redskins need. It wouldn’t matter if it were the Cowboys or the Giants. After the last two weeks, this is a must-win situation for us. We just look forward to the challenge.”
McNabb has two touchdown passes and one interception in three games this season. In contrast, Vick has six touchdown passes and no interceptions, and also has rushed for another score.
McNabb said he has spoken with both Vick and Kolb in recent weeks. He also hopes to talk with Eagles coach Andy Reid, although that might have to wait until after Sunday’s game. Reid has said that NFL rules prohibit coaches from talking with players on another team.
“It’s not McNabb vs. Vick or McNabb vs. Kolb. It’s Eagles vs. Redskins. It just so happens that I’m no longer in the Eagles uniform. I’m in the Redskins uniform,” McNabb said.