Blog Entry

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

Posted on: December 17, 2010 10:28 am
Edited on: December 17, 2010 2:02 pm
Posted by Andy Benoit

The Redskins didn’t wait until the final two minutes of a close game to throw their “franchise quarterback” under the bus this week: according to Kelli Johnson of Comcast Sports Net, Rex Grossman is getting the starting nod over Donovan McNabb against the Cowboys.
R. Grossman (US Presswire)
Grossman and McNabb have been splitting the first team reps in practice the past two weeks or so. It is believed that Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan thinks Grossman has a better grasp of the system (Grossman played for Shanahan in Houston last season).

For the Redskins, this is a potential nightmare that could make the Haynesworth fiasco look trivial in comparison. Johnson reports that several players are “extremely upset” and that the locker room is divided. Jason La Canfora of says many players believe Kyle Shanahan (and, one would assume, Mike Shanahan, as well) has lost credibility because he is using McNabb as a scapegoat. The Redskins offense ranks 27th in scoring.

In November, McNabb signed what was believed to be a long-term megadeal with the Redskins. However, the media later discovered that Washington would be on the hook for just $3.75 million if McNabb was cut after the 2010 season. That scenario now looks likely.

Replacing any quarterback with the turnover-prone Grossman is a move that speaks volumes about the quarterback being replaced. In other words, the Skins aren’t turning to Grossman because they like his potential; they’re turning to Grossman because they no longer respect McNabb’s game.

The backlash from this move, particularly if Grossman struggles, is going to be monumental. Word is Mike Shanahan was utterly ill-prepared to face the scrutiny after benching McNabb against Detroit. Shanahan is not ill-prepared this time. He wouldn’t open Pandora’s box if he thought McNabb was going to be in Washington next season.

For McNabb, whose 77.5 passer rating ranks 25th in the NFL, the discussion now focuses on which team will sign him in 2011. One has to figure the Arizona Cardinals will be at the forefront of that discussion.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.

Since: Aug 23, 2006
Posted on: December 18, 2010 11:39 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

30 is 10 years younger than 34? news to me...

Since: Dec 24, 2007
Posted on: December 18, 2010 10:33 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

Hey Cuda: First, Grossman is just 4 years younger than McNabb. Second, if everything starts clicking for a guy like Grossman, as you say, it'll be the biggest upset since Chaminade over Virginia. Grossman simply doesn't breathe the same air as McNabb. Did you pay any attention to the destruction Rex laid on the Bears? They thought so much of him, they gave up on him. He was booed out of town. Ask Bear fans what they think of Rex. Shanahan (both of them) have either lost touch with reality or think fans have the IQ of gravel. I mean, come on! Rex Grossman??

Since: Aug 10, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2010 7:37 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

Hey Benoit, do you really know WHY McNabb is getting benched for Grossman?  How do you know they don't like Grossman better than McNabb?  QB's take time to bloom in the NFL and Grossman is at the age where everything clicks for some guys.  He's finally in the same system with the same play caller for consecutive years.  Also the last time I checked, he's about 10 years younger than McNabb and has the same number of Super Bowl appearances.  You need to get off Grossman's back, at least until you see how well he performs throwing to that bevy of all-pro wr's the Redskins have.  GO REX!

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: December 18, 2010 2:47 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

You can say what you want about McNabb, but Shannahan isn't going to some 25 year old QB with plenty of upside. He is turning to an injury prone turn over machine who has no better future in this league than as a second stringer. This move makes no sense at all, you have three games left for McNabb to show some worth. Even if you don't want him for next season let him try to go out on a good note and maybe you could get a third or fourth round pick for him. There is no purpose in starting Rex, even if he shows glimpses of greatness over the next three weeks, is anyone really going to peg him their future?

I think this is just Shannahan's ego once agin trying to show us all who's boss.

Since: Jul 6, 2007
Posted on: December 18, 2010 2:46 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

haha  the skins went from being a threat (on paper) to being a joke.  quaterback went bad and haynesworth is suspended  haha  sucks

Since: Oct 1, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2010 2:25 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

  I am a Cowboys fan and was hoping they lost every game for the rest of the year.  With any luck they have a terrible record and get some help in the secondary.  However; I would like to see them lace up the skins pretty bad just to prove Shanasham is a complete stroke.  If I were a betting man I wouldn't take the skins if they were getting 30 points.  Look for Kitna of all people to shine as this will be his last game before looking for a job if Romo is back this year.  Wouldn't it be ironic if the Cowboys picked up Mcnabb as a veteran backup after the season?

Since: Dec 6, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2010 1:45 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

LOL, seems like there are a lot of critics who don't follow the Deadskins very close, Grossmans record sucks but Donovan has shown his flaws way too often this year.  on the surface this is controversial, but as a lifelong Skins fan i gotta say i was skeptical when they got McNabb and that doubt has been confirmed over and over.  no one in the Skins management structure will win any awards this year, but they are making the right move here.  Thank God this looks like a loaded QB draft this year.

Since: Dec 24, 2006
Posted on: December 18, 2010 12:40 am

Shanahan's history repeats itself

Shanahan "has lost credibility because he is using McNabb as a scapegoat."

History repeats itself.  In Denver, Shanahan lost credibility in the Broncos' locker room when he used Jake Plummer as a scapegoat and replaced Plummer, who had taken Denver to the AFC title game the year before, in mid-season with Jay Cutler, who was a rookie at the time.

Since: Jan 24, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2010 12:31 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

What I think gets lost in this whole ordeal when talking about McNabb's stats and his performance is the lack of talent around him. Look at all the other "elite" quarterbacks with the exception of Tom Brady. They all have explosive A-level talent around them. Manning has Wayne. Vick has DeSean. Phillip just got V-Jack back and had Antonio Gates. Almost all quarterbacks need talent at the skill postions to win. The redskins have to recievers that do the same thing at different levels in Armstrong and Moss n they dont have a explosive back with vision to take advantage of the sone blocking scheme of Shanahan. The tight end Chris Cooley isn't getting  enough man to man coverage and he isn't beating man to man enough to be effective. This Redskins team just doesnt have the talent to win and McNabb doesnt have the talent around him to succeed. Good luck Rex Grossman.

Since: Aug 12, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2010 12:04 am

Grossman to start over McNabb Sunday

This is pretty much what I expected.  Shanahan reluctantly put up with McNabb's flaws up until the point where the Redskins were mathematically eliminated from the playoffs.  At this time it doesn't matter if they win anymore games, so he is going to see what else they have on the current roster.  It makes sense so they can have something to judge going into the offseason.  This move isn't a surprise to anyone in the Philly area.  I guess the rest of the world will start to figure it out that McNabb is no longer an elite QB.  McNabb's act of being the victim gets old after a while.  Even though he is very polished on the outside as a human being, as a player he has a way of passive aggressively blaming everyone around him and never sincerely taking blame for his team's failures.  For him to succeed in the future, he will need to play on a team with a great defense and a strong running game.  Basically a supporting type of role.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or