Shawn Andrews accuses Donovan McNabb of mistreatment, says he requested a trade

Shawn Andrews accuses Donovan McNabb of mistreatment, says he requested a trade

Left: Shawn Andrews. Right: Donovan McNabb hugging Shawn's brother, Stacy.

Fresh off the heels of the Richie Incognito-Jonathan Martin situation, former Eagles offensive lineman Shawn Andrews is accusing his ex-teammates of mistreating him during his time in Philadelphia.

Of all people, Andrews had plenty to say about Donovan McNabb -- albeit without ever saying much of anything.

Andrews went on 97.5 The Fanatic Friday afternoon and, in an interview with Mike Missanelli, accused his teammates, specifically McNabb, of spreading lies about his health, his eating habits and other assorted topics.

Quick refresher: The Eagles selected Andrews with the 16th pick pf the 2004 draft, and although he was a three-time Pro Bowler, he played only five seasons with the team. Andrews not only dealt with his physical health issues while in Philadelphia, but also mental health issues. This 2009 New York Times article details Andrews' battles with depression, which were well-noted during his career as an Eagle.

Fast-forward to Friday and Andrews was asked if he had ever encountered treatment similar to what Martin went through down in Miami.

"I think this will be my first time on record saying that, but I did. I did. I faced a lot of that. ... "But I'll tell you what I faced. I worked with -- I have to use my words carefully -- but I worked with a lot of guys who didn't have everybody's best interests at heart. The only guy I could trust on that team was flat out Brian Dawkins. Now you imagine. I'm going to tell you this and you can maybe figure it out and try to decode it. Would you want to go to work at a place where you're putting your heart out every single day and the guy that you're protecting is saying things behind your back that isn't true?"

Asked specifically if he was referring to McNabb, Andrews said "yes." But when pressed for specifics, Andrews struggled, often repeated that he has to "choose his words carefully," and then remained unfocused and often rambled. For example, asked to describe what McNabb ever did to him, he answered:

"Man, where do I start? ... I always think, if I was one of the first guys to get a $100 million contract, I've got endorsements, I'm on commercials, is that not enough attention in and of itself?"

Eventually, Andrews described how his teammates allegedly lied about his eating habits during a contract negotiation. Andrews says he had stopped going to McDonald's months beforehand but that his teammates told team officials that he was eating fast food every day after practice.

"Bullying is a strong word. I wouldn't consider it bullying. [But you're] putting everything you have on the line for another person, and that person is saying some very, very, very untrue things about you to other guys ... how would that make you feel?

Here's a slightly more concrete example. Andrews did not report to training camp in 2008. He later revealed that he was battling depression and ultimately sought a return to the team. He went to coach Andy Reid and asked if he could address the locker room.

"He gave me the floor for however long I needed. It may have taken me 15-20 minutes to say what I needed to say, but one of the leaders on the team -- how does it make you feel when he's sitting there, looking you in the eye, rolling his eyes at everything you say, when you're pouring your heart out as a man amongst men, and he (McNabb) just rolls his eyes and blows you off."

He says he eventually sought recourse, although he did not say when.

"I went and asked Coach Reid for a trade. It goes far beyond the locker room. People think it's a band of brothers. But these are my co-workers and I understood that really early on. And you can't trust anybody."

So, did he ever confront McNabb?

"I did. ... He did what most people would do -- he denied it. But there's just so much evidence, man."

And that's really where this story breaks down. Andrews repeatedly asserted mistreatment at the hands of his teammates, but much of what was described seems to lack a particular gravity. It's likely that he and Donovan McNabb did not get along, but it's unclear it's anything more than that. Although none of us were privy to their interactions, McNabb also seems pretty low on the list of guys you would think of as potentially being "a bully."

Finally, there's the issue of Andrews as a potentially unreliable narrator, which he addresses:

"I been thinking about this before the interview, like how my credibility is under question. ... But I've really been trying figure out how I want to say this stuff and it's just a whole lot. ... "I'm of a very sound mind and body."

Is this anything more than a misunderstanding? Is it anything more than pettiness? Is it anything more than the typical shit co-workers talk behind each other's backs in every work environment across America? Maybe. Maybe not. But Andrews seem to think it is, and all we have is what he's offering. Other than this:

Add Shawn Andrews to the list of former Eagles who have a problem with Donovan McNabb.

Sixers' '66-'67 team reflects on success of 'best team ever'

Sixers' '66-'67 team reflects on success of 'best team ever'

As part of their “Salute Saturday” series, the Sixers honored the 1966-67 championship team at halftime of their 107-106 loss the Celtics on Saturday.

Fifty years after winning the title, the success of the squad (which went 68-13 in the regular season) still resonates with those representing the Sixers today. After all, they are the group Wilt Chamberlain described as “the best team ever.” 

“It’s just part of the history of this city and the organization,” said Brett Brown, who has established a relationship with Billy Cunningham through practice visits and emails. “There was a toughness with that team that he personified and the city sort of reflects. It’s stuff you hear me talk about all the time how you want our team to reflect the spirit of the city. That team did it.”

Prior to their tribute ceremony, members of the team reflected on their run in which they beat the San Francisco Warriors for the title. 

On Wilt Chamberlain
“Wilt was such a dominant figure, not only as a basketball player, but he’s almost bigger than the game,” Matt Goukas said. “He played so well, he was such a good team player – he started really passing the ball right around that time --and that enabled great scorers like Hal (Greer) and Billy and Chet Walker to do their thing, and Wilt was very happy to give them that leeway.”.

On fond memories
“It was a team that we played well together and we lived as a family and that’s what made it so good for us," Greer said. "A lot of fun, a lot of fun. We missed the next year, but 68-13 is not bad at all.”

“It’s hard to forget a situation like that where we had such a terrific team and the season went so quickly, we won so many games and then of course winning a championship,” Goukas said. “As a first year player I said, ‘This is the way it’s supposed to be, I guess.’ But of course I never won another championship as a player, but we had such a terrific group of guys and true professionals that for me as a rookie, Billy Melchionni as a rookie, we really benefited from guys like Hal Greer, Wally Jones and Harry Costello, they really showed us the way.”

On team chemistry
“It was very difficult times when you look at the sixties from a social aspect,” Cunningham said. “Martin Luther King was killed the following year we won the championship. Race relationships weren’t the best. And this time, which was just about half black-half white, I’m not even sure, it was never an issue. That’s the beauty I think of being on a team you know getting to know people, you judge them as an individual and nothing more than that.”

“I think it was our coach Alex Hannum, for one (that kept the team together),” Greer said. “And of course the big guy. He held us together most of the time, he could rebound, play defense, do it all.”

Ivan Provorov buries Chicago nightmare by showing Blackhawks his true self

Ivan Provorov buries Chicago nightmare by showing Blackhawks his true self

Ivan Provorov moved on but didn’t forget.

The 19-year-old still remembers losing his footing on the United Center ice in front of 21,263 fans, alone in his own end and costing the Flyers a goal in a blowout defeat to the Blackhawks on Oct. 18.

In just his third NHL game, Provorov had his rookie moment. He also had a minus-5 rating when the 7-4 loss was all said and done.

Well, on Saturday at the Wells Fargo Center, he saw the Blackhawks again and made it a point to show them his best. Provorov ripped off two goals in 31 seconds of the second period to erase a 1-0 deficit and spearhead a 3-1 win for the Flyers (see story).

Better output than last time?

Provorov laughed, paused and then laughed again.

“A little bit,” he said. “I think so.

“I was trying to use it as a positive thing. Try to prove that that’s not me, that it’s just one bad game.”

Consider that job done.

“I didn’t play my best at that game,” Provorov said. “But I put it behind me, learned from it and this was a better result tonight.”

In 31 ticks of the clock, the Russian defenseman topped his goal total through the first 25 games (see 10 observations). Provorov uncorked a slap shot and slung a wrister for the tallies early in the middle stanza.

“I think you have to keep everything in perspective from a night like that,” Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol said of Provorov’s first game against Chicago. “He is a guy that continues to work at his game and continues to build.”

Provorov didn’t net the hat trick, but in the same period, saved a goal on the defensive end when he quickly pounced on a puck dribbling toward the goal line off and behind goalie Steve Mason.

“I came from the left corner and I saw the puck was rolling on Mase’s shoulder,” Provorov said. “It went down, rolled to the goal line. I just got there as quick as I could and swiped it out.

“I think it was close. As soon I saw the puck, I tried to get there as fast as I can.”

After experiencing some growing pains to start the season, Provorov has played better. Once he makes a mistake, he rarely makes it again.

“He’s just beyond his years in terms of maturity and the way he studies the game,” Hakstol said a little over two weeks ago. “He’s a young guy that I can probably ask him about a play that happened two weeks ago in a game and he would immediately have recall on that play. A very intelligent player, he’s handled the ups and the downs pretty well."

Mason isn't surprised by Provorov's development.

"When you come into the league at a young age, it’s not easy and you’ve got to get your feet under you," Mason said. "We’re starting to see that [with Provorov]."

And two goals in half a minute don’t hurt.

“Score one goal in a game, it’s a good feeling. Score two in one shift, it’s unbelievable,” Provorov said. “Two great plays by our forwards. The whole team, it was a great effort, we played a great hockey game, so it was easy to play.

“Every time you score, it’s like a confidence booster. For me, it’s defense first but when you get goals and assists, it’s always nice.”

The Flyers had the players’ dads on hand for Saturday’s game. Provorov’s father, Vladimir, couldn’t make it from Russia, but you can bet he tuned in.

“He watches every game back home,” Provorov said. “Today was a little easier because it’s only 9 p.m. back home when the game started, so yeah, I think my whole family watched it.”

He watches the other games at 3, 4 a.m.?

“Yeah,” Provorov said with a smile, “then he takes my brother to practice at 6.”