May 21, 2007

Spuds kills McNabb trade rumor

Dumb, Dumb, Dumb: This Rumor Fails The Grade

May 21, 2007

It started as a fill-the-space "scenario" in the Sunday sports section in Philadelphia. A reporter named Don McKee, who has not stepped foot in an Eagles locker room in many years, if ever, tossed one against the wall to see if it would stick.

The embarrassing part, the evidence that there is too much media and too little going on right now in the sports world, especially in Philadelphia, is that it did stick.

And now some are actually, unbelievably of the belief that the idea of trading Donovan McNabb to the Chicago Bears for linebacker Lance Briggs has some teeny, tiny fraction of truth.
On the record, it doesn't.

Anybody with half a brain knows that. The problem is that we don't live in a world where that much brainpower is used.

QB Donovan McNabb the recent mini-camp: Let's hope he ignores these kinds of rumors McKee is not the one to blame here. He doesn't cover the Eagles. He doesn't profess to have sources within the organization. And in this particular case, McKee just had nothing else to write, so he figured he might get a reaction by making up a trade scenario in his mind.

If there is a criticism of McKee, it is that he just doesn't know his football, for he writes this line, one that every football person in the league would think is completely stupid: The question most Eagles fans are asking right now is: Why would the Bears make that deal?

Hey Don, I have to take a really strong stance here and tell you that no team in the world would trade a quarterback the caliber of McNabb for a linebacker. Nobody. Really, it is a completely foolish suggestion, in my opinion.

Anyway, the real beef I have is that this "nugget" gained some steam. And here and there since Sunday, the story has appeared in "rumor" form on some web sites and some Eagles fans are a little nervous about the idea and are asking if ... there ... is ... any ... truth ... at ... all to the story.
There isn't.

But this is how the media works now. Make a suggestion or say something out loud and suddenly you have a story. It doesn't matter if it is true. It doesn't matter if there are no on-the-record sources. Heck, it doesn't matter if there are no sources.

A story is a story and, these days, even the most outrageous fables are given legitimacy, if even for a moment.

That moment is enough for quick-trigger fans to have a reaction. Today, with the proliferation of television channels and web sites and message boards and text messages, all it takes is an unfounded spark to start a flame and then, well, you know where that goes.

And what do the players think these days? They surely hear the rumors and they are asked by family members who surf the Internet and log into the boards and see the headlines. Most players I know pay very little attention to rumors, but you wonder just how much they are able to block. Wouldn't it raise some doubt, maybe just a little?

In McNabb's case, there should be absolutely no doubt. The Eagles aren't going to trade him. They are, as a matter of fact, counting on him heavily to again be a franchise quarterback who will lead the team to a Super Bowl victory.

That is the focus of the franchise. That should be the focus of the quarterback, of the team, of everyone associated with the Eagles.

Rumors are vicious and rumors have no regard for the consequences once the stories start to fly. This latest story, this rumor, this untruth, has breathed too long now. It is time for it to die, and for all discussion about the "no story" to end. Now. Go away, rumor mill, there ain't nothing here to talk about.

It's fun to hear Spadaro go off about something. He is usually very level headed, but every now, and then he just explodes. I would too, if i had his power, and heard all the crap he does about the Eagles from the rest of the media. So much for the week of good press from McNabb's cookout.

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