Donovan McNabb just made his regular appearance on his ESPN 980 show with Kevin Sheehan and Thom Loverro, and while he mostly deflected questions about Mike Shanahan's decision to bench him for Rex Grossman with two minutes to go in last Sunday's loss to the Detroit Lions, he did make a firm statement about his future in Washington.
McNabb, of course, is in the last year of his contract. When asked about whether he would be the Redskins' quarterback next season, McNabb said there was a "100-percent" chance.
McNabb acknowledged that he said "100 percent" in part because "if I had said 75 or 60, it would have been another big story." However, he did say "that will be something we'll see" on his next contract. McNabb said his contract negotiations are going similarly to Peyton Manning's out in Indianapolis. He said that "both sides are communicating," when asked whether there was more urgency on his end or the team's end.
As for his thoughts on Shanahan's decision, McNabb told reporters that while he was a little surprised by being benched, he accepted it because it was the coach's decision. He was also asked about reports that he has poor practice habits, and shrugged those off. Via John Keim of the Washington Examiner.
"Well you can ask these guys how I work and my work ethic. My work ethic has never been a question. My tempo has never been a question. There'ss a lot of digging going on right now, miscellaneous digging. When situations happen like this people start to reach for stuff that's not there. It's really not a question to even answer. There's nothing more I can say."
Sheehan and Loverro read the comments by Chris Mortensen and Tim Hasselbeck to McNabb on the air, and a stunned McNabb responded "I haven't heard anything to that effect. That's a new one."
As for the claim that Mike Shanahan planned to sit him if he struggled in that situation, McNabb said he wasn't aware of that. He also had this to say to the suggestion that he might have been too hurt to play, via Keim.
"You have to play. There's a difference being hurt and injured. And my team relies on me to be there. I want to be there for my team and if I can't walk then I can't go. That's just the way I play. No matter if you're banged up or what you have to be in there. Coach makes the decision. I can only say how I feel and what I feel is best for me."
He also reiterated that he doesn't have any problem with Mike Shanahan, offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan or Grossman. He even said he went out to dinner with Grossman last night, calling them "good friends." When asked about the Redskins bringing in JaMarcus Russell for a workout, McNabb said that Russell is a "great guy" with a future in the NFL, and that "it was good to see him.
McNabb closed by saying that he and Shanahan have talked since the decision, and says he is just ready to move on.