As you've no doubt heard by now, Donovan McNabb is not coming to the Raiders. And now, a moment for the collective yawn this non-story deserves.
Done? OK. Now get ready for the backlash of stories ripping the Raiders, as if they pulled an Ernest Byner and fumbled the ball at the goal line by blowing a chance to acquire the five-time Pro Bowl quarterback from the Eagles. Because remember, they were the leaders in the McNabb Sweepstakes. Reportedly. But what if the Raiders were never really in hot pursuit, as so many national outlets were reporting? In fact, everything I heard coming out of Silver and Blackdom had the Raiders lukewarm and realistic that McNabb wanted little, if anything, to do with them.
So of course, the story now is that the Eagles wanted to do right by McNabb so they traded him to a contender in Washington with a potential Hall of Fame coach in Mike Shanahan (sorry, Raiders fans, I know that hurts) rather than to the literal and figurative Black Hole (take that how you will).
Sorry, I'm not buying it. Pro football is a business first and foremost and for the Eagles to trade McNabb to a division rival - which will face them twice a year; think he won't want to prove a little something to his former team and city? - lends more credence to a notion of diminishing skills than doing McNabb a favor.
Would McNabb have improved the Raiders the minute he stepped foot in the team's Alameda complex? Absolutely. But that story - real, or imagined - never came to fruition.
What is interesting, however, is what kind of domino effect Washington getting McNabb will have on the draft. Washington seemed primed to take former Notre Dame quarterback Jimmy Clausen at No. 4.
So what if Clausen is still on the board at No. 8, when the Raiders pick? Surely Bruce Gradkowski, JaMarcus Russell and Charlie Frye are intrigued.