Donovan McNabb Press Conference: 11-10-05

Donovan McNabb Press Conference: 11-10-05

On how challenging this stretch has been for him: "It actually hasn't been challenging. As a team, I think we just have to come together, pull through, and understand the situation that has happened, and what we need to do in order to get out on this field and get back to playing with a lot of passion, playing with a lot of excitement and playing together."

On whether he regrets anything he has done along the way:

"I don't regret anything that I've done or I've said, or the way I've handled it. In life you have to handle situations that happen, if it's personal or whatever, in a professional manner. You go along by trying to put out the fire if there is a fire that has been made. Also you want to handle it in a way that if kids are watching, they know that it's the right decision to make or it's the right thing to do, understanding that we are role models and that we are grown men. You have to do the right thing. I don't regret anything that I've done or said, or the way I've handled it. Things that I've done, I think my teammates understand, and I think people that have been watching and have an understanding of what's going on know exactly what I've done."

On what he thought about WR Terrell Owens' apology:

"I thought it was a sincere apology, just like my teammates have said. It's unfortunate after the apology, what happened after that. But again, that maybe could have been solved earlier on in the week or whatever may have been. That's over. It's the past and we're moving on."

On whether he is surprised the way things turned out:

"Just with the past, I think everyone has the opportunity to be able to erase the past and move on. That's why I've always been very defensive of the whole situation of his past and just continued to back him no matter what had happened. And it's just unfortunate that it continued to happen, and whatever it led to, with the result now that just happened."

On whether he is worried this affected his leadership abilities in the locker room:

"I don't worry about how I'm looked upon from my teammates. When it comes to leadership, I think leaders can't worry about the way people may feel about them. You continue to lead your team or to lead your unit in the right direction first by showing by example. I'm not a big rah-rah guy. I'm not a guy that's going to get out in front of everybody and start yelling and screaming and spitting and kicking. I believe in showing by example. Whether it's my teammates or people that are watching, understand that I'm giving all that I have. I'm preparing myself to the best of my ability to get out and have a successful game or whatever it may be. If people don't agree with the way you handle things, that's on them. That's their opinion. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. But when it comes down to it, the ball is in my hands and I want to make the right decision with it."

On whether he thinks his teammates will look to him for more leadership:

"That's kind of my plan. I've definitely been trying to do the right things taking the game up to another notch and making sure that the guys around me understand that we all have to play well together in order for us to achieve that common goal. And that's something that we have been stating for the last six years that I've been here. So, to reiterate that is important and also to show by example is important. When it comes to being the leader of this team or the captain of this ship, your teammates are very analytical and they're also in a position where they may be waiting to see how you handle things in a professional manner, and when you handle it, how do you react afterwards? And I just kind of be myself and it's important that you do that."

On whether this team will be more responsive now:

"I think you'll definitely see a different team, and like I said after the Washington game, you've definitely seen a different team. It's unfortunate that we lost the game, but it's a learning experience. Everything that we do in life is a learning experience and hopefully we can use that to boost our energy, to boost ourselves in this week and be prepared to come out Monday Night and have a great showing."

On his father saying this "was a black on black crime" in the Philadelphia Daily News:

"That's something that I think you would have to ask my dad about, just with the message he's sending with that. But it's unfortunate anytime, if it's black or white, that we would have this type of tragedy. And anytime you talk about somebody publicly or continue to bring someone's name up that has no bearing or has no weight of what you're trying to do in your own personal situation, it's unfortunate. It shouldn't happen and that it has happened, I think it's important, again, that I continue to handle it in a professional manner. My parents have always been very supportive of what I've done and continue to provide advice, and the main thing that they've said to me is just be yourself. Don't let anyone or anything try to bring you away from your goal, and my goal is to lead this team to a Super Bowl win. In order for that to happen I can't let what one person or one group say something bad about me and pull me away from my goal."

On whether he thinks tension has been lifted:

"I can't say that. We were still a loose team with everything that was going on. I think it kind of just got to a point where some people just maybe wanted to get it off their chest and kind of handle it in a way that it was over. It's unfortunate what the end result was, with him not being able to get out on the football field with us, but you have to move on. There are some things in life that you are a part of that just don't go as well as you wanted to. And when something happens you have to react in a way that it's not like a surprise. You have to be able to just say, ‘Hey, okay. I'm going to go ahead and put this behind me. I'm going to move on and we're going to get this thing rolling.'"

On what he meant by saying the team was better without T.O.:

"Just in general. I think when it comes to team play, it's in the locker room, it's in the classroom, it's on the field, whatever it may be. Again, like I said in the interview, it's tough to lose a guy with the caliber that he has. The guy is a great athlete. If he's not the best, he's definitely 1 of the top 2 receivers in the game. And it's hard to lose a guy like that. But, with the situation it has happened it was a tough decision on the organization. It's a tough decision on the team. But again, the decision was made and we have to be able to move on."

On whether he ever questioned T.O's ability on the football field:

"Never. We've done some remarkable things. And even when he was hurt, when everyone started the mess of what he said, she said, it just continued on. I've always said that with him on the field we do remarkable things. We could have set records and that was something that I looked forward to doing, win a Super Bowl together. But it just continued to go in the wrong direction and now it's time to get some good work with the guys that we have here."

On whether if T.O. had a problem with anyone else on the team besides Donovan he would have still been here:

"Again, it's the coaches' decision. As an organization they come together and they talk about it, if it's any player. This is something that shouldn't happen across the league and it's something that probably people will be talking about for years to come. You see on ESPN, you see the classic of who to blame. That's something that people talk about, if it was a ball dropped by the first baseman with the Red Sox (Bill Buckner), you don't want to be in that situation. It has happened and no matter who it was or who he was talking about, it may be that things would have been the same."

On whether this upcoming Monday Night game is the most crucial regular season game he has ever played in:

"I think this particular game is going to be more like a playoff atmosphere. It's a game that we definitely got to have and a game that we want and look forward to. We remember what happened down in Dallas and with our record being 4-4, it gives us an opportunity to get another win under our belt, put us in better position in the NFC East and continue to propel this second half of the season in the right direction, in the direction that we expected to be in. So, us as leaders and captains of this team, we've got to make sure the guys understand, and while we're out at practice have the mindset that we will be faced with a lot. It's going to be a tough game, but we've got to be the ones who come out on top."

On how they are going to get to the Super Bowl without T.O.:

"You'll probably chop this up of what I'll say, but we did it three times without him. I'm sure you'll probably put that in a piece where it'll make me look like I'm talking about him. But we had guys, when we went to the playoffs earlier in my career, with Charles Johnson and Torrance Small, then Todd Pinkston and James Thrash. We had Todd Pinkston, James Thrash and Freddie Mitchell, probably three names that everybody kind of used as jokes while analyzing our passing game or breaking down film on what we do, but we got the job done. Now we have Greg Lewis, Billy McMullen, Reggie Brown, L.J. Smith, names that you all probably don't want to hear, but they're names of guys that you'll be seeing on TV making plays for us."

On how comfortable he is with C/G Jamaal Jackson replacing C Hank Fraley:

"The good thing for us as quarterbacks and centers is we were able to get some work in training camp. We were able to get some work a little bit in the preseason. I know Jamaal had gotten banged up before, but he was here last year and we got some work together. It's obviously a new deal now where he's the starter, or whoever is the starter, to get out there in game situation on Monday Night vs. the Dallas Cowboys, but it's important that myself and the offensive line continue to calm him down, give him confidence and let him just play football."

On what he's seen from Reggie Brown and Billy McMullen:

"I've seen those particular guys, as well as guys like [TE] Stephen Spach, Greg Lewis, [RB] Lamar Gordon, I've seen those guys step up and take full advantage of their opportunity. Against Washington those guys made some big plays for us and I look forward to this thing continuing to improve. These are guys who took time out of their schedule to come to Arizona, to spend a week out in Arizona with 118 degree weather, to go out and throw, go out and work out with me, go out and lift, things that we can use to benefit what we set out to do."

On whether things went wrong with T.O. on the field:

"I've never had too many problems as far as him getting in my face on the field or anything like that, no. But as we see, what happens on the field is on the field, but it's another thing what happens off the field. Everybody sat and watched ESPN, or everybody heard about what may have been said or what had been done. Then questions begin to fly. Some of the questions began to fly in the locker room of what's going on and why has it happened, and there had to be answers. The decision that was made was by [head] coach [Andy Reid] and the rest of the guys, and we just have to move on with it."

On how difficult it was to keep quiet about the situation:

"Sometimes you do want to say something, but the best way of handling it is just to hold your chin high, and just continue to provide confidence to the guys that are here, and never lower yourself to what someone else may say. That's not me. I don't handle things that way and it was also important that my teammates understood that none of that stuff really bothered me. It may have bothered them and they wanted to talk about it. I kind of use it as jokes and I kind of just brought a whole new different light to the situation. It just continued to get worse and worse, but again, you never heard me say anything bad about him. You've never heard me say anything bad about the situation. I just continue to put that behind me and continue to try to move on."

On whether it ever bothered him:

"It didn't ever bother me. (Jokingly) Sometimes I ran through a wall or kicked my dog or something. It never bothered me. This is a dream for me, to play in the NFL, let alone lead the team as a quarterback of the team to the Super Bowl. I'm hungry right now. I want to get back to the Super Bowl. I want to win it. So maybe they can talk about this Philadelphia Eagles team being one of the greats. That's something that brings a smile to my face, not going through he said, she said, or he feels this way, this is going on over here, what are you doing differently? I don't care about that. I care about what we're doing in this locker room, what we're doing out on that field because besides my family at home, this is my other family."

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