Donovan McNabb: “I Never Threw Up in the Super Bowl”

Continuing his retirement tour of the Philly press, Donovan McNabb also chatted with PhillyMag for its September issue. As you can imagine, a lot of talk about T.O.—but most importantly: What happened during that ill-fated Super Bowl?

Let’s talk about the Super Bowl.
Everybody talks about it to this day, but if you watch film, I never threw up in the Super Bowl. When they try to say I was tired at the Super Bowl, y’know—Freddie or T.O., even my center Hank Fraley said I was tired. Everybody blew up on that. It’s like, first of all, I got dumped on my head three times.

You threw two touchdowns, but do you still think about the three interceptions?
All the time. The first one to Westbrook, we had him. Then it faded on me. The second one, I think Teddy Bruschi might have intercepted while I was trying to squeeze one in there to T.O. Those stay with you. When you pass for 357 yards, that’s like the second highest or third highest in the Super Bowl. And we were right there. But one thing I’ve always said—I don’t think football players should be remembered by the Super Bowls that you win. You get measured by your legacy. Wins and losses, yards, the way you changed the game.

The perception of you seemed to shift among the fans after the Super Bowl. Did you feel that?
There was a shift because the team was different. Some fans blamed me, and they loved T.O.—it was Donovan’s fault. But as a quarterback, that’s what you go through. Blame the quarterback, blame the coach. What was funny, when everyone was saying “Donovan’s not doing this or that,” we won 10 or 11 games. We were in the playoffs. People got so accustomed to making it to the playoffs, it wasn’t how many games we were going to win. It was what we did in the playoffs. “It’s Super Bowl or bust this year.” Yeah, it’s Super Bowl or bust for everybody.

You will, of course, want to read the whole thing.

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  • Jan D

    You can tell when someone does not possess leadership qualities and thinks of themself first when their fallback position in failure is to spout statistics and rationalize the disappointment (e.g., we didn’t win the big game but, wow, I – in bold – threw for a lot of yards of historical proportions).