Donovan McNabb is under contract with the Washington Redskins for now, but that is expected to change – by release or trade – shortly after free agency starts. Minnesota has been one speculated destination, but Arizona is picking up momentum after his latest workouts.
There has been a lot of talk that Donovan McNabb
is on the target list of the Vikings when the current lockout ends and the NFL returns to business as usual (if it can be usual given the recent animosity). If there is going to be any truth to the rumors, Wednesday's McNabb sighting can't be viewed as a positive.
McNabb, who lives in Chandler, Ariz., a suburb of Phoenix, was one of about 20 players that worked out on their own at a Phoenix football field. McNabb, who is still under contract with the Redskins, has been the subject of plenty of rumors since being benched and replaced by, of all people, former Bears bust Rex Grossman
in the final month of the 2010 season. His differences with head coach Mike Shanahan
, who wasn't in favor of making the pre-draft trade with the Eagles to get him a year ago, have led to the conclusion that there is little to no chance McNabb will be back. It would seem the only question is whether he will be traded or released.
What makes Wednesday's workout troubling for those who want him in purple is that the majority of the players at the workout were members of the Arizona Cardinals, including wide receivers Larry Fitzgerald
and Steve Breaston
While (shockingly) I don't find myself on the conspiracy side of McNabb's practice session – he lives in Phoenix and there were other Arizonans (like Baltimore TE Todd Heap
) taking part – it is hard to ignore that the coaching staff for the Cardinals can get a free inside look from the players, when they can talk again, as to whether McNabb "still has it" or not.
When McNabb rumors have circulated, it would seem that only two teams have been mentioned – the Cardinals and the Vikings. While neither team has outwardly expressed an interest, which would be a transgression of the lockout, McNabb would be a short-term answer for both teams.
The workout was closed to all but one member of the media and McNabb was quoted as saying that they weren't looking for a media circus with video circulated of McNabb throwing passes to Fitzgerald.
"I always believe in a low profile," McNabb told the Arizona Republic
. "Guys get a chance to work and it's not something you're broadcasting all over the place, telling everybody what you're doing and who is in town and all of that. I think guys understand in the (lockout) period the work you need to put forth. As you can we push each other. A lot of us have known each other for a while."
McNabb also said he wants to play another couple of years and fully expects to be somewhere else, saying, "We'll see what happens. Who knows where I'll be anyway? I'm looking forward to that and, when the time comes, step in there and be ready to go."
It seems clear McNabb will end up elsewhere in 2011. Where will that be? It would appear the Cardinals have the home-town advantage.
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton said Wednesday that he would be willing to sign a stadium bill before the state settles its current budget mess. The stadium bill has been essentially shelved in recent weeks while legislators determine how to trim billions from their budgets over the next two years, but Dayton remains optimistic that a stadium deal can be done to assure the Vikings will remain in Minnesota.
The current timetable for a return of events to the Metrodome is still on schedule. The roof is having the panels replaced and the work is scheduled to be completed in July, at which time the roof will be ready to be reinflated, with events able to be scheduled starting Aug. 12.
Tarvaris Jackson and CB DeAndre Wright have to assume their time in Minnesota is done with, given that the team gave away the numbers they had at the end of last season. Christian Ponder has been given T-Jack's No. 7 and rookie defensive back Mistral Raymond was given Wright's No. 30.
Jared Allen will host his second charity golf tournament as only he can do on Saturday, June 18. His tournament, Night Ops II at Ancala Country Club in Scottsdale, Ariz., will benefit his foundation, Homes for Wounded Warriors. It includes nine holes of golf during the day and nine holes at night. Marine drill sergeants are located at every tee box to get the minds right of the participating golfers. The goal of the foundation is to equip home to accommodate soldiers who came back from war with disabilities. The first tournament was able to fund one house in Minnesota and two in Arizona.
Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall is attempting to reduce the latest self-inflicted Twitter wound after apologizing Wednesday for spontaneous tweets sent out after the killing of Osama bin Laden. Mendenhall wasn't alone in his surprise that he saw Americans cheering the death of bin Laden. Others shared the shock of 20-year-olds who were 10 at the time of the Sept. 11 attacks, singing the Steam song "Goodbye" (that "na-na-na-na, hey-hey, goodbye ditty) to celebrate the capture and killing of bin Laden. The Steelers released a statement denouncing Mendenhall's statements and claiming the organization does not share the beliefs he made public. Twitter has been able to get a lot of people in trouble (let's not forget Bryant McKinnie's late-night tweets about "off the chain" parties in South Beach before missing practice for the Pro Bowl and his subsequent dismissal) in recent years and Mendenhall is just the latest.
Good news in these dire economic times: Jenn Sterger has a job. The woman made famous for receiving "junk mail" from Brett Favre, went on ABC's "Good Morning America" to revive her 15 minutes of fame. She got a reprieve (sort of) and will be back on TV (sort of) this summer. Sterger served as a ringside reporter for a show called "Hometown Throwdown" – two one-hour kickboxing specials that will air on something called Fuel TV.
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John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.