After 11 seasons in Philadelphia, the Donovan McNabb era has offically ended without a Super Bowl championship. ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting the Eagles have agreed to send the best quarterback in franchise history to the division rival Washington Redskins. They will receive a second round pick this year (37th overall), and either their third or fourth round pick next season. As transactions go, they don't get much bigger than this.
Following weeks and literally an entire season's worth of speculation during which the organization constantly reiterated Donovan is their quarterback, it took all of one day for Andy Reid to strike a deal. It does not come as a surprise though. The Eagles made their position clear last summer when they handed McNabb a raise, but declined to offer him an extension.
What's most amazing about the swap is the front office obviously decided they were content trading McNabb within the division. As a result, the five time Pro Bowler will have two opportunities every season to remind fans and his former club exactly how great they've had it over the past decade.
With McNabb out of the picture, the job finally belongs to Kevin Kolb. He filled in well for two games in 2009, which undoubtedly helped the front office become comfortable with the idea he could take over. However, it appears Michael Vick could return as an insurance plan in case the first year starter were to fizzle. The Eagles will most likely add another quarterback through the draft, likely a mid- to late-round pick who can develop and serve as the emergency reserve.
The second round pick obtained gives the Eagles another important piece in the upcoming draft. While we originally figured they could get at least a first for McNabb, the 37th pick isn't too far off. Beside being one of the top selections in the next round, this is widely considered the deepest draft going back as far as over a decade, so that selection still easily nets the team a player they've graded as a first round prospect. They can also package it with their 24th and move up the board, something not at all unusual for the Birds.
With all the doubts and concerns brewing the past few weeks, it's hard to imagine receiving a better package for McNabb. The Eagles are holding a press conference at 9:30.
These are only the facts of the trade. We have more analysis on the way beginning tomorrow from both the Donovan McNabb and the Kevin Kolb points of view. Now that it's actually happened, how do you feel?