Donovan McNabb officially retires as a Philadelphia Eagle
Former Pro-Bowl quarterback Donovan McNabb holds nearly every franchise record for the Philadelphia Eagles. Monday, he officially retired as an Eagle and his jersey will be retired in a separate ceremony during the upcoming season.
He is one of nine players to have their jerseys retired – joining the likes of other Eagle greats like Reggie White and Chuck Bednarik.
Long-time Eagles safety Brian Dawkins was the latest Eagles to receive that honor last April.
“To all the fans – I truly love you,” said an emotional McNabb at the NovaCare Complex in Philadelphia. “I gave everything I had when I stepped out on the field. I never complained.”
Philadelphia Eagles team owner Jeffrey Lurie opened the press conference praising McNabb’s work ethic on and off the field.
“I used to tell my fellow owners – I’m so lucky to have a quarterback and a leader you can be so proud of every single day of the year,” Lurie said.
McNabb holds the following Eagles records, via PhiladelphiaEagles.com:
- Regular season wins by a QB (92)
- Playoff wins by a QB (9)
- Passing yards (32,873)
- Completions (2801)
- Passing yards in a season (3916)
- Completions in a season (345)
- QB rating in a season (104.7)
- Completion percentage in a season (64.0)
Dawkins played ten seasons alongside McNabb. The current ESPN NFL analyst said his teammate kept the locker room loose and always came ready to play.
“I knew when I stepped on the football field, I was going to get 110 percent from my quarterback,” said Dawkins, who made some comments before McNabb took to the podium. “And he was going to go out and give everything that he could, everything.”
McNabb was named to six Pro Bowls and in 2005, led the Eagles to their first Super Bowl in more than twenty years. McNabb’s best statistical season with the Eagles came in 2004, when he helped the Eagles win both division and conference titles.
On December 5, 2004 against the Green Bay Packers, he threw for 464 yards and 5 first half TDs in a decisive 47-17 victory. He was selected No. 2 overall in the 1999 NFL Draft to a city which had their heart set on the team picking Texas running back Ricky Williams.
The moment when a group of Eagles fans booed McNabb on draft day has become an unavoidable – and infamous – part of McNabb’s career.
“Let’s put the booing to rest,” McNabb said with a smile. “It made me stronger as a man.”
McNabb also paid tribute to his parents Sam and Wima, wife Roxi and four chidlren and his former coach Andy Reid. McNabb’s jersey will be retired on Thursday, September 19th when the Eagles face Reid’s new team the Kansas City Chiefs.
“If you want to be great, make the man next to you greater,” McNabb said in closing.
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