Shanahan feels fortunate after trade for McNabb

We only heard a few questions directed toward new Redskins coach Mike Shanahan during Tuesday’s news conference to introduce his new quarterback, Donovan McNabb. But Shanahan did reveal that talks between the Redskins and Eagles began on “general terms” about a month ago, while Redskins GM Bruce Allen and Andy Reid talked often over the last few days, leading to the deal.

It’s a deal Shanahan admitted he didn’t really expect, saying he didn’t think McNabb would be a possibility.

“First of all, I didn’t really think there would be an opportunity to get Donovan. It happened fairly quickly,” Shanahan said. “I can tell you at the end of the day, when the deal was done, it was a little bit of surprise. But I wasn’t shocked. I was very excited.”

Shanahan briefly shared his admiration of veteran quarterbacks, drawing comparisons between McNabb (entering his 12th season), John Elway (who won two Super Bowls after his 15th season in Denver) and Steve Young (who earned a Super Bowl ring after his 10th season in San Francisco. Shanahan can now saw he coached all three men.

“When you do have a quarterback that has won, a quarterback who knows how to lead, a quarterback that knows how to set the standard, it sets the tempo for the rest of the team,” Shanahan explained. “It doesn’t happen very often when you have players like that, to get into the situation we were in. So I felt very, very fortunate for this to come about.”

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