JaMarcus Russell is now working out with the Washington Redskins, possibly giving them a new option at quarterback. Russell and the Redskins were working out Tuesday to see if he was ready to make a comeback in the NFL already, according to ESPN. What this doesn’t do, though, is instill any confidence in current quarterback Donovan McNabb, who has to be seeing the same signs he did when the Philadelphia Eagles brought in Michael Vick for at try-out. Does this mean that McNabb is on the outs again? Or maybe it’s as simple as Washington trying to prepare for next year.
In Sunday’s game against the Detroit Lions, McNabb was taken out during a fourth quarter where it seemed that the Redskins could score a touchdown and win the game. Head coach Mike Shanahan gave excuses about why he made the change, bringing in backup quarterback Rex Grossman to take over for McNabb, but his story changed a bit on Sunday and Monday. First he told the press that he felt Grossman had a better handle on the two-minute offense for the team, and then he stated that McNabb was told that this was going to happen even before the opening kickoff. Whatever might be true, McNabb watched as Grossman threw the game away.
The story now from Shanahan, according to a quote from ESPN, is that McNabb isn’t physically ready to take on a two-minute drill for the team. McNabb has been hobbled by hamstring problems, but it’s such an odd move to let one quarterback play the first 58 minutes of the game only to be removed when crunch time comes around. It’s the right of the head coach to make the tough moves like this, but maybe he should also be taking some responsibility for the loss that Washington had hung on them by the lowly Detroit Lions. Those who hadn’t heard from Ndamukong Suh in a while saw him get a nice highlight in the Detroit vs. Washington game.
Enter JaMarcus Russell, who set back the Oakland Raiders franchise for years by not being ready to handle the NFL game. Russell tanked as one of the worst busts in the NFL history, but every football player eventually gets a second chance to prove he can get back to the form that made him a star in college football. McNabb is a free agent at the end of the current season, and we have heard no news of an extension being offered, so it is just smart business for Washington to try out Russell. He isn’t the answer, though, and the Redskins have their bye week to try to save this season before they fall out of playoff contention.