The League

Sean McCann
Beat Writer

Sean McCann

Former Philadelphia Eagles beat writer for Gannett

Philly's youth movement

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Michael Vick is in a better spot than Donovan McNabb at this point, for a few specific reasons: expectations, gifts and weapons.

Philadelphia has gotten very young very quickly, and not just at the quarterback position. The fan base was braced for a rebuilding season this year, and if Vick can give them something more than that, he's got a lot of free cheesesteaks coming.

McNabb, on the other hand, steps onto a relatively veteran squad. We've been hearing form the national media for years that Philly has been too hard on poor Donovan, that those mean Eagles fans don't appreciate what they have. If he flops in D.C., what then?

Vick is younger than McNabb, and he was always faster, with about equal arm strength. They both suffered the same doubts over accuracy, and McNabb was perceived as the superior decision-maker in the pocket. But much of that last factor can be coaching, and Vick has shown improved ability to run an offense in Philadelphia.

Lastly, the presence of DeSean Jackson, LeSean McCoy, Jeremy Maclin and Brent Celek in Philadelphia makes the Eagles a better fit than the Redskins for almost any quarterback, and that young talent is dying to perform for Vick. Or Kolb for that matter.

Very few in Philadelphia have bothered to lament the departure of McNabb, including those young weapons -- the same ones he fell flat with in two games against Dallas at the end of last season. Had he won those games, No. 5 would still be an Eagle. If he had played well in defeat in those games, he might have been traded amidst fan uproar. But he played poorly in those games. Not only that, he chose to throw the team's "youth" under the bus.

If he walked into the Eagles locker room today, even if just to say 'Hi," there would be more than one "youth" headed for the sanctity of the training room.

Donovan McNabb is the best quarterback in Eagles franchise history, and a borderline Hall of Famer, so it may seem unbelievable that the team could turn the page with such conviction. Such is the fatigue factor with his brand of communication/leadership, which too often substituted passive aggression for accountability.

Say what you like about Michael Vick, but he's learned some hard lessons about accountability.

Maybe McNabb's act hasn't yet worn thin in Washington, and maybe it never will, but the Eagles have moved on, and so have most of their fans.

By Sean McCann  |  September 30, 2010; 12:37 AM ET  | Category:  Donovan McNabb , Michael Vick , Philadelphia Eagles , Quarterbacks , Washington Redskins Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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I read this article and I thought "Wow, someone who 'gets' it", and then I saw he was a writer in Philly for years and it dawned on me. He gets what's happened because he lived it.

Sean, perfect article.

Posted by: Ombudsman1 | October 1, 2010 6:57 PM

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