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It's Deja Vu All Over Again

One of many experimental iterations ...

Boone

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As the news of Donovan McNabbs trade to the Redskins swept across the internet like a forest fire tonight, I couldn't help but be reminded of another shocking Eagles to Redskins QB trade.

I'm reading BGO member, and accomplished sports writer Jim Gehman's fascinating Redskins offering "Then Gibbs Said to Riggins...The Best Washington Redskins Stories Ever Told", a collection of first-hand stories told by former Redskins greats. Within that treasure trove of Redskins storytelling is one from Hall of Famer Sonny Jurgenson. Jurgy tells a story of another April Fools surprise, one that worked out pretty well for him.

Jim graciously agreed to let me share it with you.

Sonny’s “Little Added Incentive”

From 1957 to 1963, Sonny Jurgensen would travel to Washington once a year as a member of the division-rival Eagles. The final five trips back to Philadelphia were with a victory.

Those trips, however, became reversed for the veteran quarterback after the Eagles hired Washington’s former head coach, Joe Kuharich, in 1964. That’s when the last thing Jurgensen thought would occur actually did. He was traded to Washington for fellow quarterback Norm Snead.

“I didn’t know why [I was traded] because Joe Kuharich came there, and we had a nice meeting for a couple hours talking about what we were going to do,” said Jurgensen, who had been Philadelphia’s starter the previous three seasons and owned the team record with 32 touchdown passes in 1961. “I think it was in ’63, I had seven ends that broke arms, so I had no receivers to throw to. We’d won [the NFL championship] in ’60 and had gone downhill. In ’61 we had a good year, but in ’62 and ’63 we had all kinds of problems. And the problems were physical problems. So the team got old, and we slipped.

“I thought that [Kuharich and I] had a very good meeting and I went to lunch two or three blocks from the Eagles’ office, and somebody came in and said, 'Hey! I see they just traded you to Washington.’ I said, 'Aw, don’t tell me that. I just left the coach an hour ago.’ And he said, 'No, I’m not kidding you, Sonny. They just traded you to the Washington Redskins for Norm Snead.’ I said, 'Yeah, I know you’re kidding. It’s April Fools Day.’ And it was. I didn’t believe him. And it was true!”

It is also true that the Jurgensen-led Redskins didn’t enjoy too many sunny days as the 1964 season got underway. They lost their first four games, albeit three were by less than a touchdown. But when they hosted the 2-2 Eagles on October 11, Jurgensen played as if Washington hadn’t lost a game. He threw four touchdown passes as the Redskins popped Philadelphia, 35-20.
“I had given everything I could do, and I think they saw fit to trade us. But I know when I went back to play against them it made a little added incentive,” Jurgensen said. “It was a good thing in the long run, but when it happens to you, you’re shocked.”

The Redskins earned a 21-10 victory when the teams met again on November 1 in Philadelphia. It was the first time they had swept the series since 1958.


 

Billfishead

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I'm hoping this trade story ends the same way. Can't change it, so I gotta get behind it.

Now let's go get ourselves an o-line and kick some ass.:)
 

Jimbo

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I'm hoping this trade story ends the same way. Can't change it, so I gotta get behind it.

Now let's go get ourselves an o-line and kick some ass.:)
Kinda takes the suspense out of our first round pick now, doesn't it? While THIS was a shocker, I'd be even MORE shocked if we picked anyone besides Okung or Bulaga.
 

the Omniscient

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I don't know that I would be shocked by much of anything after this move Jimbo. Trading a QB that has taken a team to five championships, a Super Bowl, and Pro Bowls to a division rival is just crazy talk to me. When he is healthy, he is as dangerous as they come. I am about 50/50 on whether or not they trade him again.
 

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After reading about how McNabb pretty much dictated this move to the Skins, I just don't see how we could possibly trade him again. He doesn't need the money so he'd be more likely to retire than play for the Rams, Raiders, Bills or any other scrub team. He wanted the chance to play for Shanahan and that's exactly what he got. Now we have to go out and build him a line.
 

Special K

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Well, well, well...I really hope this story has the same happy ending.

I really am shocked they traded him to us. Very happy, but shocked.

I really hope we are able to successfully build a mud-loving O-line for him :D

Welcome to Washington Mr. McNabb!!
 

Sarge

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Wonder if the danny is playing fantasy football again?
 

Sarge

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Well, well, well...I really hope this story has the same happy ending.

I really am shocked they traded him to us. Very happy, but shocked.

I really hope we are able to successfully build a mud-loving O-line for him :D

Welcome to Washington Mr. McNabb!!
Actually, it worries me that the iggles traded him to us. What does that say really? To me, it says philly thinks they can win without him and that they are not worried seeing him on the other side of the field twice a year
 

China

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Well, well, well...I really hope this story has the same happy ending.
Which happy ending is that? The one where the QB goes on to the Hall of Fame without winning a SuperBowl for his new team?

The jury is still out on this deal, but our QB situation is definitely better (although I don't think we'll get much for Jason - his trade value is now very low). The 'skins definitely need a tackle with that first pick. Hopefully management doesn't completely mortgage the future.
 

Chris

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Actually, it worries me that the iggles traded him to us. What does that say really? To me, it says philly thinks they can win without him and that they are not worried seeing him on the other side of the field twice a year

Like Mike Wise wrote today:

The spin: No-brainer. How many times can you acquire a Pro Bowler without giving up a first-round pick, for a guy that already knows your division?

The truth: Andy Reid and the Philadelphia Eagles know Donovan McNabb better than anyone. And they were inexplicably okay with moving him to another team in their own division.

Think about that while you're rushing to the team store for your new jersey.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/04/05/AR2010040500166.html?hpid=artslot
 

Hog Fever

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I think the Eagles are taking a hell of a gamble here. For years McNabb has been the focal point of that offense. This off-season they get rid of Westbrook and now they get rid of McNabb. They better hope LeSean McCoy and Kolb both play up to expectations this year. I’m not saying that’s impossible, I’m just saying that they both have big shoes to fill. If they don’t light it up right out of the gate the fans in Philly are going to be their normal forgiving selves.
 

Jimbo

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Wonder if the danny is playing fantasy football again?
I'm telling you Sarge, I swear Vinny has perfected some kind of mind control device and this is the result. Some people just can't let go and Vinny is one of them. ;)
 

Elephant

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Like Mike Wise wrote today:

The spin: No-brainer. How many times can you acquire a Pro Bowler without giving up a first-round pick, for a guy that already knows your division?

The truth: Andy Reid and the Philadelphia Eagles know Donovan McNabb better than anyone. And they were inexplicably okay with moving him to another team in their own division.

Think about that while you're rushing to the team store for your new jersey.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/04/05/AR2010040500166.html?hpid=artslot

The problem I see with this is Sal Palantonio said this was more of a power struggle in the Eagles organization. Word is Andy Reid would never have let McNabb go but President Joe Banner is taking more control over player personnel. So Wise would be wise to get a little more involved in the story before spouting this off. I trust Sal over Mike when it comes to Iggles football.
 

Chris

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The problem I see with this is Sal Palantonio said this was more of a power struggle in the Eagles organization. Word is Andy Reid would never have let McNabb go but President Joe Banner is taking more control over player personnel. So Wise would be wise to get a little more involved in the story before spouting this off. I trust Sal over Mike when it comes to Iggles football.
Fair point.

Cross out the first four words (Andy Reid and the) and it is still a valid point by Wise.
 

Boone

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Fair point.

Cross out the first four words (Andy Reid and the) and it is still a valid point by Wise.

I think the other aspect of this we're largely ignoring is that it's very difficult to look at a player who's been entrenched in a system with the same coaching staff for years and years, and move that player to an entirely new situation and expect nothing to change. In other words, the one thing I feel relatively certain of is that there's no way to predict what we'll get out of McNabb in an entirely new set of circumstances.

Whatever one's assessment of McNabbs play the last few seasons in Philadelphia, I'm not sure predicting his future as a Redskin on that alone is all that reasonable. He'll be in a new offense, with new coaches, an entirely different team around him. That could create struggles, but like any new recipe, it could also produce something very positive. Sometimes, simply the act of putting someone in a new environment can bring growth.

Something to keep in mind :)
 

Chris

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At least one thing is for sure, if the o-line is not markedly improved from a talent standpoint and McNabb is consistently harassed and constantly trying to avoid un-blocked defenders, the subsequent failures of the offense won't be his fault. ;)
 

riggins44

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I don't think Reid wanted to deal McNabb, period. The new GM seems to want to make his mark. There is all the markings of a power struggle within the Eagle organization.

Back in Feb. we inquired about McNabb, but the Eagle organization was hell bent on not trading him within the division. When they finally said we will entertain offers they more or less tied their hands.

McNabb barked about being sent to Oakland or Buffalo, but he told his agent he would like to come here. Reid being loyal to McNabb wanted to make it happen. I'm sure there was some heated discussions within that organization about this deal. When we made the additional pick offer they had to pull the trigger. No one else had made offered an additional pick.

Don't see that as deja vu or status quo. I think we're seeing our FO working like a real NFL team. They do their do dillegence and was able to pull a major trade.
 

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