A day when Donovan McNabb is relevant is a very rare day, and a day when his words carry significant meaning is an even better gem.

But he answered a question about Peyton Manning, because answering questions about Peyton Manning is a required ritual for any NFL player who appears on any radio station anywhere in America.

During a recent appearance on ESPN 980 in Washington, that Manning question was floated to McNabb, partly because of the standard reasons outlined above. But the question was also prompted by the similarities between the failed McNabb experiment in Washington that mercifully ended last summer, and how the Manning experiment could end if the Redskins pursue the possible and likely free agent.

Or at least that’s how McNabb sees it.

From the D.C. Sports Bog:

“Peyton’s not gonna go there,” he said. “I don’t see Peyton ending up in Washington. Because what happens is now, you’re bringing in another veteran who will be 35 36, who has been in one offense throughout his career. It’s the same situation.

“Now he comes over, and as they say now, Peyton is such an offensive coordinator on the offense. So now what does that do to your offensive coordinator? Does he step down? Does he step back? Does he begin to change the whole offense according to the play of the quarterback that he has in Peyton Manning? Well, I didn’t see that happen, so I definitely don’t see that happening for Peyton.”

McNabb was asked the other inevitable question regarding his time in Washington and his failure in Mike Shanahan’s system, and the two answers flowed together neatly.

“You just think the plays that you’re calling that you [used in] the places you came from are gonna automatically work, and you don’t have the players for that. You’re not building around what you have. They say it’s gonna take two to three to four, but who really has two to three to four years as a player or as a coach in the NFL?”

While it’s tempting to disregard McNabb’s words due to his simple lack of talent compared to Manning, he’s not necessarily commenting on talent. He’s commenting on age, and that’s something McNabb has some pretty extensive experience with after his flying leap off the quarterback cliff this past year.

McNabb is 35, and it was the erosion of his skill due to age that led to his exit from two NFL cities in 2011, and he likely won’t find another team any time soon. We would acknowledge Manning’s eventual decline due to his fight with father time, but still scoff at MacNabb’s comments if the soon-to-be former Colts quarterback was healthy. But he isn’t, and potential buyers still can’t be confident about the well-worn product they’re purchasing.

McNabb was awful, and he was just old. Manning is old and unhealthy.

And the rest…

  • Michael Weinreb took a trip to Indianapolis during the dead period between the Super Bowl and Scouting Combine, and after talking to a few local experts who are apparently worthy of representing an entire state, he concluded that the city’s love affair with Peyton Manning is far more “fraternal than passionate.” [Grantland]
  • That conclusion is absurdly and ridiculously false. [Colts Authority]
  • Placing a franchise tag on Peyton Hillis will cost about $7.7 million, which means it’s highly unlikely that the Browns tag their running back after his rocky season plagued by both injuries, and general locker room discomfort. [Cleveland Plain Dealer]
  • We knew that one day Donald Driver would share the same stage with Urkel. Both the fading wide receiver and the faded piece of 90′s pop culture trivia will be on this spring’s edition of Dancing With The Stars. [Green Bay Press Gazette]
  • In a radio appearance this morning Mario Manningham said that he wants to stay with the Giants, but he’s still being realistic about his odds of playing in Gotham next year, saying that Victor Cruz is more likely to get a deal. [Mike Garafolo on Twitter].
  • Brandon Jacobs wants to stick around and help the Giants defend their championship too, but if he remains in New York’s backfield, he’ll be doing it at a greatly reduced price. [New York Daily News]
  • Chain Gailey’s view of C.J. Spiller’s role in Buffalo’s offense has changed, but not much. [Buffalo Rumblings]
  • There’s speculation that the Texans will use their 26th overall pick to add depth at wide receiver, which makes sense. Andre Johnson is still a stud, but he’s not a young stud anymore at 31, and he’s always been brittle. Injury concerns aside, someone needs to draw coverage away from Johnson too. [Houston Chronicle]
  • There are many voices opining on Matt Flynn’s future and the Packers’ next move, but no one seems to know what the hell they’re talking about. Must be late February. [Total Packers]
  • The price tag for Robert Griffin III and the Rams’ second overall pick is quickly escalating. Browns fans are both excited about Griffin’s potential, but also cautiously aware of the boom or bust nature of quarterbacks. That leads to this inevitable question: is it that smart to pay a steep price for the consensus second-best QB in this draft? [Waiting for Next Year]