Dropping the snake emoji on Twitter would have been enough for Lane Johnson to beat Donovan McNabb at the point of attack, but Johnson then jumped on 94WIP with Paul Jolovitz last night to fully pancake the Eagles former franchise quarterback. Johnson, if you haven’t heard, is upset over what he perceives to be McNabb’s unnecessary criticism of Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz, which includes this assessment:
I think personally if he can’t get out of the second round in the next two, maybe three years. Really two years to be honest with you, if they can’t get out of the second round, they should look to possibly draft another quarterback because you just don’t know about his durability.
You can read Johnson’s extended response here, but this is the gist, courtesy of WIP’s Eliot Shorr Parks:
This is what I meant — every training camp we have all of these ex-players come and shake our hands, wish us good luck. Then, they just go out and just talk hate. I feel there is a lot of envy, jealously, and I see a lot of fakery. It isn’t just me — a lot of other teammates see it too. You would think the best quarterback in franchise history would try to build up a young man that looks up to him instead of always criticizing him, critiquing him and wishing he would fail so he could be the missing link and feel better himself.
Typically, I’d brush a story like this aside. After all, McNabb isn’t employed by the Eagles and he’s not required to wave pom-poms for his former team. Plus, why should Lane Johnson, or anyone, really, care about what McNabb has to say at this point?
This isn’t the first time an obviously bitter McNabb has made a comment that has a “Hey, everyone. I used to matter!” vibe about it, and this does feel driven by what seems like some periodic need of his to be part of the Philly sports news cycle and have people pay attention to him, as we can see by his response to Johnson’s radio spot:
Deal with it. 😂😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/1jqVAggbHz
— Donovan McNabb (@donovanjmcnabb) April 22, 2019
An awkward misfire? So on-brand.
Allow me to play counselor here for a moment. McNabb is allowed to be critical of the Eagles. Hell, Troy Aikman essentially suggested changes needed to be made in Dallas and was specifically critical of quarterback Dak Prescott before the Cowboys got hot and won the NFC East last season. But it’s different with McNabb. These comments feel driven by a palpable resentment he still harbors toward a fanbase that never fully connected with him despite his successful playing career. That resentment is almost certainly exacerbated by the city’s love for several of his former teammates, and he’s probably perceptive enough to understand that for many, his name is more synonymous with letdowns and high-stakes failures than it is with being a franchise icon. All of this has to drive McNabb crazy and so these occasional flare-ups are symptomatic of both his animosity and a clearly bruised ego.
Anyway, this should all make for a good day on the airwaves. Ike Reese seems ready to go:
— Ike Reese (@Ike58Reese) April 22, 2019