Donovan McNabb had some harsh words for Mike Shanahan during his appearance on FOX Sports Live on Sunday Night. He had some gentler, more forgiving things to say about Robert Griffin III.
“Right now, it’s starting to get frustrating for him. And he’s never been in this position,” McNabb said of the embattled Redskins quarterback. “Last year everybody was patting him on the back and congratulating him on his rookie season, rookie of the year, putting up great numbers, a seven-game win streak, getting into the playoffs. But right now it’s been a bad moment for him. It’s been like a bad dream. And he’s stuck in it by himself.
“Really, to be honest, it started this offseason,” he continued. “Because everyone tried to sugarcoat the fact that he shouldn’t have been in the game while he’s hurt, they’re trying to cover each other’s side, and then now you see him out on posters, rehabbing, getting his knee back, his health, he’s ready to go. And so it became a circus. I blame the Washington Redskins for this, because you’re in control of the cameras that are out there. You know that you have guys that are coming back off of injury and why are we seeing it on ESPN, why are we seeing it on the national news?….From that circus on to where we are right now, it’s a pattern in which we’ve seen it coming.”
It’s tough to blame the team for Adidas marketing campaigns and rehab documentaries that list RGIII as a producer. But McNabb has taken the papa bear approach with RGIII from the beginning, and he isn’t going to give up now.
And speaking of not giving up, McNabb was asked about his unreturned phone calls to RGIII.
“For me, it’s just lending a helping hand,” he said, when asked if RGIII should have called him back. “It wasn’t that he had to make a decision. To me, I’ve been in that situation. I know exactly what he’s going through. But is there somebody that’s helping him right now? I don’t think so. I don’t think so. Because you don’t hear any of his teammates coming to his defense, speaking up and saying, ‘Hey you know what, I’ve got to play better, Robert did a good job today doing this, doing that, we all can get better.’ And this is something that happens in locker rooms. Jealousy kicks in, everybody all of the sudden shies away from the camera because they don’t want no one to focus on their flaws. ‘Let’s focus on Robert, because he’s the quarterback, he’s the guy that said he was ready, he’s gonna lead us back.’”
Despite the fact that RGIII wasn’t interested in having him for a mentor, McNabb is determined to get advice to the Redskins quarterback any way he can.
“Take a deep breath,” McNabb said, as if addressing RGIII. “Focus in on what you’re doing wrong. Sit in the meeting room, just yourself, and watch yourself. Focus in on your mistakes. Go out there and practice, spend extra time, just on YOUR mistakes. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing, because they’re clearly not focusing on what they’re doing, they’re focusing on what you’re doing. Put in that extra time, put in that extra effort, and good things will happen.”