|McNabb says he would rather remain with Eagles than play for hometown team Chicago|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 17 October 2007 14:17|
He said plenty in the summer, when he proclaimed the Chicago Bears would win a Super Bowl if McNabb joined them.
The Bears will get an up-close look at the quarterback when they visit the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. The odds they will get him in a Chicago uniform anytime soon appear slim, however.
McNabb said Wednesday he expects to end his career with the Eagles.
``I do believe that,'' said McNabb, a Chicago native. ``Again, like I said, I just love being here. I love playing for the Philadelphia Eagles. I love the fans here, and you just want to continue to win and have success here.''
Harris raised a few eyebrows during McNabb's charity golf tournament during the summer, when he said he would ``love'' to have him in Chicago and added: ``If he comes to Chicago, we'll definitely win the Super Bowl.'' Although Harris apologized and said he was just joking, the comment was seen as a shot at Rex Grossman.
On Wednesday, Harris said, ``That's under the bridge. It's gone. I cleared it up.''
And McNabb claimed ignorance.
``Did he say that at my event?'' he asked.
``I really didn't hear that,'' he said. ``I was working with the kids. I wasn't really paying attention to that. I don't know what happened.''
McNabb was enjoying one of his best seasons before it ended in Week 11 last year. Then, he watched as Jeff Garcia led the Eagles to the playoffs in his absence and stewed when they drafted quarterback Kevin Kolb with their first pick. That fueled speculation that his best days were over and his relationship with the organization was eroding.
Drafting Kolb may have said more about how the Eagles feel about McNabb's ability to stay on the field than what he does on it. A 2-3 record aside, they believe they are built to win now and that hinges largely on their veteran quarterback.
So far, the season has been a bumpy one.
McNabb delivered one of his best performances ever in Week 3 against Detroit, throwing for 381 yards and four touchdowns with no interceptions. His passer rating was a perfect 158.3 against the Lions, but he's a step slower these days. He was spotty the first two games and the New York Giants sacked him 12 times in Week 4 to tie an NFL record.
There was that HBO interview in which he said black quarterbacks face greater scrutiny than white ones, and he got booed at home. That, of course, wasn't the first time. Fans let him hear it when the team drafted him.
``I think he's a quarterback that hasn't gotten the credit he deserves,'' said Bears defensive tackle Darwin Walker, a former Eagle.
But McNabb insisted Wednesday he does not want to leave.
``For every one or two individuals who may criticize what I've done or whatever, there's about five to six or seven different individuals who love ... what I've done and the way I kind of carry myself and the type of person that I am,'' he said.
Those Chicago rumors? He's aware of them.
But he's also under contract for 2008, meaning the Eagles will decide where he plays next season. There's no guarantee that the Bears would be in the market for a veteran, anyway.
For now, there are more pressing issues, such as fixing a once-dominant defense.
The Bears switched quarterbacks after the third game, benching Grossman for Brian Griese. Now, their defense is in shambles.
Things were so bad during last week's 34-31 loss to Minnesota that coach Lovie Smith questioned that group's heart after the Vikings racked up 444 yards, including 224 by running back Adrian Peterson.
``One of the things we used to say when people came down to Soldier Field, one of the things they talked about was how hard we played,'' Smith said. ``You see the ball carrier, and you see most of our defense around them.''
Not last week.
The Bears are 2-4 and look nothing like the team that made the Super Bowl last year.
``When you lose it, it takes a lot out of you,'' Harris said. ``I think the mind frame that we have now has to shift, and I think that's what we're doing. What we did last year is not going to work this year. I think we're taking more of a grown-man approach now.''