One can understand Donovan McNabb’s frustration.
Through 13 NFL seasons, McNabb was one of the best quarterbacks in football. He was named to six Pro Bowls. He’s still in the top 30 all-time in completions, passing yards and passing touchdowns. His excellence has been forgotten a bit.
Since his last season was 2011, he is also eligible for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He hasn’t come close to getting in, though McNabb thinks he has the resume for it.
"I'm not hesitating on that. I am a Hall of Famer," McNabb told TMZ. "My numbers speak for themselves."
Donovan McNabb compares himself to Troy Aikman
Had McNabb just told TMZ he should be in the Hall of Fame, it might not have been that big of a deal. He is in that conversation at least. But his comparison to a Hall of Fame quarterback who played for the Philadelphia Eagles’ division rival raised eyebrows.
"My numbers are better than Troy Aikman," McNabb told TMZ.
McNabb: 167 games, 37,276 yards, 234 TD, 117 INT
Aikman: 165 games, 32,942 yards, 165 TD, 141 INT
Don’t forget McNabb’s 3,459 rushing yards and 29 touchdowns. Aikman had 1,016 rushing yards and nine touchdowns.
“But he has Super Bowl rings, and he played with Hall of Famers as well,” McNabb told TMZ.
And we all know that’s the difference. Aikman’s Dallas Cowboys won three Super Bowls. McNabb lost in his only Super Bowl appearance.
Super Bowls for quarterbacks can be overrated. Brad Johnson wasn’t better than Dan Marino, Jeff Hostetler wasn’t greater than Dan Fouts, Jim Kelly was a better quarterback than Joe Flacco, and so forth. But the emphasis on rings isn’t changing.
Does McNabb have a case?
Aikman was fortunate to be in a great spot through his career. He played behind an all-time great offensive line, with one of the best running backs ever, on one of the most loaded teams in NFL history. Would Aikman have carried a lesser team to three titles? Likely not.
We have gone overboard factoring Super Bowl rings into a quarterback’s legacy. Football is a team sport. Quarterbacks don’t play one-on-one, and they certainly don’t win championships on their own.
But we all know with even one ring, McNabb would be much closer to the Hall. He might be in already. Other great quarterbacks have retired recently or will retire soon, and many of them will likely jump McNabb in line.
McNabb does have a good Hall of Fame case. Which could make his frustration grow as the years go on, if he doesn’t get in.
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