(Photo courtesy of the Philadelphia Eagles)
Talk of Fame Network
It’s a question we often ask guests on the Talk of Fame Network: If you had a free pass to give someone not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame who would it be? Sometimes it provokes unexpected answers, and sometimes it doesn’t.
And with Hall-of-Fame quarterback Warren Moon, it produced a response that, frankly, no one anticipated.
“I would say Donovan McNabb,” Moon said on our recent broadcast. “I would love to see him in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I thought his career was exceptional. He went to four or five championship NFC games (it was five), went to a Super Bowl, had a great touchdown-to-interception ratio as far as his passer rating and all that. Just a great competitor.”
He has a point. McNabb took the Philadelphia Eagles to five straight conference championship games – including four straight -- and had the Eagles in the playoffs eight of the 11 years he was with the team. He won 61 percent of his games, had a 234-to-117 touchdowns-to-interceptions ratio and is one of only three quarterbacks with over 35,000 yards passing and 3,000 yards rushing. John Elway and Fran Tarkenton are the others, and they’re in Canton.
Then, of course, there’s this: In the three years following McNabb’s trade to Washington, the club swooned – reaching the playoffs once, producing a 22-26 record and losing 23 of their last 35 (including the playoffs), a record that cost then-head coach Andy Reid his job.
McNabb is on record saying he belongs in the Hall of Fame, telling reporters in 2013 that “if I had a vote I would vote (for me),” and that’s great. Except, he’s right. He doesn’t have a vote. Neither does Moon, of course. But, if he did, he made it clear where he would go first.
And it’s with McNabb.
“That guy had his team in a position to win a championship for (many) years in a row,” he said, “and that’s hard to do. People don’t really give you the credit you deserve until after they see you’re gone and see what happens after you’re gone. They (the Eagles) went through some very lean years after he left. I’d like to see him be the next African-American quarterback in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.”