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Sonny, Sam and Larry on McNabb's benching

(By Paul Sancya - AP)

In case you were watching on television, here are the Redskins Radio Network highlights of the McNabb benching. It started with Larry Michael asking Sonny Jurgensen whether the move surprised him.

Sonny: Yes, it does. It does. [They've] never gotten into a rhythm, obviously, in the passing game, and that's what you've got to have, the passing game, when you can't run the ball against that defense.

Sam Huff: The score is 31-25, and you're gonna take your No. 1 quarterback out?

Sonny: They just think he might have a different rhythm. It's a difficult spot for him to come into, but Rex is a streaky quarterback, he's either very hot or very cold.

Larry: Back to pass Grossman. Steps up, gets hit, gets sacked, the ball is loose. And it's picked up by one of the Lions. It's Ndamukong Suh, and he goes in for a touchdown. What a disaster. The Redskins have had a hard time protecting the quarterback, and that time, Rex Grossman was just hammered to the turf and the ball popped out.

Sonny: Well, I don't think that move worked too well, did it?

Sam: Well when you change quarterbacks like that, he's not ready for it, quick count, the ball was snapped back there. That's a big change on a football team.

Sonny: He took the snap from center, though, he was under center when he took the snap but he just got rushed and blindsided and the ball came out.

Sam: He didn't even warm up. He didn't even have a chance basically to warm up, that's my point....That was a coach's decision, which I questioned a little bit, but nobody paid any attention to me.

Sonny: That's true, Sam, they don't.

Sam: Well, you're an old quarterback, if a coach took you out in that situation....

Sonny: Hey, I've had it happen.

Sam: I know, it's terrible....

Sonny: Maybe they just put him in there for exercise or something, you know?

Larry: I don't know, you still had a chance to win it.

Sonny: Yeah, exactly. I don't know why...when you still were in the game....

Sam: I'll tell you, when you take a star out, like Sonny or McNabb, that's big time. A big-time question.

The trio agreed that they would ask Shanahan about the benching after the game, and they did, shortly after he had addressed the issue at his press conference.

"It was just that last drive, there was no timeouts, I thought it gave us the best chance to win," Shanahan told Michael. "I've got a quarterback who's very familiar, he's run the two-minute offense probably 100 more times than Donovan has run it, and we were going with different formations, and so I thought it was the best thing for our football team to give it a chance to win. Obviously the pressure got to us on the first play."

By Dan Steinberg  | November 1, 2010; 11:26 AM ET
Categories:  Media, Redskins  
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Next: McNabb in the clutch


Rex Grossman does not give anybody the chance to win.

Posted by: StuScott_Booyahs | November 1, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

I think it is now clear that Mike Shanahan is not exactly truthful in what he has to say, especially when explaining why he makes the decisions he makes.

Posted by: bbmcoachk | November 1, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Say good bye to McNabb,say goodbye to the chemistry of the team, say goodbye to the leadership of the team, say goodbye to anything good that transpired in OTAs, offseason manuvering to bring at least a contender in the NFL..... It all came down in a whim, last minute call to take out a franchise QB for well whatever....If the REDSKINS, were already a joke around the league.... these next weeks will drain a Redskin fan...comedy of errors, a joke an illusion... they should sign up for an HBO prodcast... Oh The Wizard of Oz has already been a production Hit

Posted by: travmanf | November 1, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

"And we were going with different formations." Maybe that's what was going on in his panicked mind - a different two-minute drill than what Donovan had practiced. But did they?

Posted by: justsayin | November 1, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Priceless. Buried within the garbled, half unintelligible nonsense, these three actually made pretty some sense. Crazy, strange move to make in that situation. Another year, another controversy. McNabb will be gone next year and then we'll probably see yet another big name coach brought in to clean up. Thanks Snyder.

Posted by: dbunkr | November 1, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

We are Washington Redskins fans. We know football. We also know when we are being lied to. We deserve--we require, better from our Head Coach. Don't pee in our face and tell us it's raining.... "A better chance to win"? As Chad Johnson would say: "Child Please".

Posted by: MTalleyMon | November 1, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Mike Shanahan made an absolutely horrid decision yesterday. However, let's stop with the hell is freezing over rhetoric. The Skins are going into a bye week so there is plenty of time to mend fences. Further, if the next eight games go very well then this will just be a minor blip on the radar screen. Nothing is decided just yet.

Posted by: hateisnotafamilyvalue | November 1, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

What in the world were the coaches (father & son) thinking? One of the dumbest decisions I've ever seen a Redskin coach make and this is after Spurrier, Zorn & Turner. I was just getting to like Shannahan. At least we were winning some games that we would not have won last year. I'm sure you won't hear it from the players, but the morale on the team now must be terrible. We'll be lucky to finish with a better record than Dallas. Hey, maybe Phillips will be coach of the 'skins next year. Jack Kent Cooke you were the greatest and we Redskins fans reeeeeeaaaaally miss you.

Posted by: SkinsFan39 | November 1, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Lost in the discussion about the perplexing decision to bench McNabb, is another example of the horror that is listening to Sam Huff on the radio. He regularly makes mistakes in his comments, just like this time with his comments on the snap from center. While Sonny agreed that no one pays attention to him, he is an embarrassment on the air.

Posted by: rickmillner1 | November 1, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

No one cares what Sam says. He's a blubbering fool in the booth. Banks ran a kickoff back 97 yards or so and Sam says something like "I've never seen a kickoff returned that far". Yo, Sam. You've been playing or watching the game for 60+ years and you've never seen a kickoff returned the distance? There's a return of that distance or longer pretty much every week.

Posted by: randysbailin | November 1, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse


McNabb was benched by Andy reid, he came back and led the eagles to the playoffs.

Sam is on the Radio, you are on a blog. He's one up on you.

Posted by: ged0386 | November 1, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Who is coaching the Redskins now, Brad Childress? Benching #5 was a vintage Chilly move.

Posted by: shogun_5 | November 1, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Mcnabb was benched against the Ravens for the 2nd half after they were losing 27-0. Kolb came in and threw a pick six to Ed Reed.

Yes it's intended to send mcnabb a message at the expense of the ENTIRE TEAM. Shanahan is an OVERATED HAS BEEN WHO GOT LUCKY PICKING TD in the 6th round. He's a little napoleon jerk who's laying the groundwork for his OVERATED son to get a NFL coaching job at the expense of redskins fans!

Posted by: jdb70 | November 1, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

And how much Jack Daniels were the dynamic duo drinking at the time? Remember, Sonny is the Danny's boy and probably gave the go-ahead on the McNabb trade debacle. No QB of the future, Grossman sucks, no draft picks to get a line that can protect. All the trouble in the world, eh? 8-8

Posted by: KDSmallJr | November 1, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

That was dumb! Redskin fans have delt with keeping a bad QB in for so many years and we finally get a star. We pull him when it mattered....Shanahan got some esplainin to do! face the music

Posted by: LongTimeSkinsFan | November 1, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

That was dumb! Redskin fans have delt with keeping a bad QB in for so many years and we finally get a star. We pull him when it mattered....Shanahan got some esplainin to do! face the music

Posted by: LongTimeSkinsFan | November 1, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

First and foremost, the Oline stinks. Father and Son had a well oil group going in OTA's and now rotating players. WTH!!! DD should be on the line way pass KL. Misses a lot of blocking assignment, looks like a deer in headlights. Move KL to center at best he should be able to hold a NT or T coming up the gut. Now on to the Defense. Can anyone tell my why Rocky (Roads) McIntosh goes crazy after making an assisted tackle ten yards down the field, but fail miserably on the line of scrimmage? He had the tackle on Johnson while DHall was holding him up and Rocky Road missed. He needs to follow LF59 and just play ball. Celebrate on the side line, tackle on the field. HTTR

Posted by: thyrin45 | November 1, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

It really is amazing that all three of them are allowed within 100 feet of a broadcasting booth.

Posted by: loux24 | November 1, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

The need is not to switch the established stars of the team in the last two minutes. The need is to adapt to the abilities of the people you have to work with, and for sure at this time you are not doing this. Use a big back and run between the tackles and take some of that pressure off of the QB then I think you will see some improcvement.

Posted by: lyinla1 | November 1, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Even though it was a questionable decision we live in a tabloid world of 24/7 coverage of everything and internet blogs so we tend to drive the news into a bigger frenzy then it actually is. Imagine if we had this kind of coverage during the 90's and 80's. Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley would have been banished from the NBA for gambling and womanizing. John Riggins would have been scrutinized and by the media and demonized on web blogs for getting drunk and talking smack to a supreme court judge, Joe Theisman would have been trashed daily on web blogs for dumping his wife for Kathy Lee Crosby and Dexter Manley would have still gone to rehab. Oh yea, and Jimmy the Greek and Al Campanis would have gotten jobs with Fox Cable news along with Morton Downing.

Posted by: ged0386 | November 1, 2010 6:24 PM | Report abuse

I think this is only a big deal because we are making it one. If they beat philly in two weeks all is forgoten. Winning fixes everything. Just ask Brett Farve every week. When he wins texing controversy is gone. When he loses, is Farve done? Mark my words, if the skins win the next two games McNabb and Shanahan will be all of you guys favorite people.

Posted by: ged0386 | November 1, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Coach Shanahan should have benched Kyle!

Posted by: moralcompass1 | November 1, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

The over-reaction to this is amazing. The O-line is bad. McNabb has been taking a pounding. I think he got gun-shy. And I can't say I blame him.

This is not the end of Western Civilization. The team will move on and the message is that everyone is accountable to perform. It's about time.

Posted by: PS7900 | November 1, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

So Shanahan is a lousy coach, a lousy human being AND a liar? Wow, Fox News will be signing him any minute.

Posted by: pjohn2 | November 1, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Much has been said already, the one thing that has not been said is this, The fans got to observe a game that the Redskins found a way to lose. We first lost to the Rams and now we lost to the Lions, if you can't beat those two teams then you are going nowhere.
The coaching on this team? TBD

Posted by: randybapst1 | November 1, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

c'mon, i cannot believe everyone here is already pushing the panick button. first of all, coach Shanahan and McNabb have been around long enough and have proven their worth to be doubted. Our O-line couldn't protect against the pass rush, McNabb has been sacked like 22 times already this season so please, don't blame the QB or the coach. McNabb also had to make adjustments, but getting little protection in the pocket is not giving him time to make those adjustments either. i think the bye week will help everyone, but either they improve that damn O-line and have a respectable running game or it's not going to be even a .500 season for the skins.

Posted by: eddypotomac | November 1, 2010 11:57 PM | Report abuse

hi, i started watching the skins at griffh stadium.moved to r f k and was there for a long time. my point is, i saw sonny, sam,hogs and for you new football experts to put down those players, you are just showing your ass.listen closely to what that thay say say. thay don't go with the house,they still tell the truth about the game.i think our qb is done,was done when we got him. the coaches son as o c sucks bye

Posted by: jmeeks6scrrcom | November 3, 2010 10:16 PM | Report abuse

coaching sucks,son same. lay off sonny and sam as thay have more redskin brains than the people running the team. from a 40 year fan. do something boss, get your kid a job washing cars, chist, i could run plays better. gets some guts. jim

Posted by: jmeeks6scrrcom | November 3, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

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