Coach Leslie Frazier said today that offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave and quarterbacks coach Craig Johnson have spent the past 48 hours looking at possible ways to help quarterback Donovan McNabb improve his technique and fundamentals.
That would be a good thing, considering McNabb's 58.0 completion percentage, not to mention that 37.5 completion percentage on third downs. It also would help, by the way, if McNabb had better pass protection, but that's another story.
"One of the things we always do on Monday is we come back and go through the tape," Frazier said. "We're always looking at the mechanics, techniques and fundamentals of all our players. Craig and Bill did the same thing with our quarterbacks. ... We did the same things we always do in trying to improve on our techniques and fundamentals."
"There are some things we want to work on today in practice and the rest of this week that we think will help [McNabb]," Frazier said. "We definitely want to work on some things."
McNabb is a 13-year veteran about to turn 35, but Frazier said players should never stop looking for ways to improve.
"It's not a whole lot different than a guy who's a Cy Young winner in baseball," Frazier said. "You're always trying to improve on what you have. You don't want to ever stay the same. I just know from experience that if you can continue to work on technique, whether you're a 10-year vet, an 11-year vet you want to always watch tape and try to improve on technique and fundamentals. If you ever get to the point where you think are perfect, that's exactly when you'll see things start to get out of whack."
Frazier also talked about how protection can affect McNabb's accuracy.
"People making you move in the pocket. the rush is in your face, it can make a difference for sure," Frazier said. "We're always talking about that from a defensive standpoint, getting the quarterback off his launch point. So it makes a difference."
As for what the coaches will work on with McNabb, Frazier said, "We just want to make sure we're launching the football from the right point, that we're taking the proper drops, that our feet are where they need to be. That's some of the points of emphasis."
McNabb said he's always self-evaluating and is open to input from the coaches. But asked if there's anything he needs to "change," McNabb said, "No."
Then he went on to say: "I think the thing about it when you critical of yourself and your play, you just look at your reads, how fast you get the ball out. obviously footwork and everything, But that's not just my position. That's everyone. As a quarterback, when you're watching yourself, it's everything. It's ball placement, it's the right read and things of that nature. That's kind of how I evaluate myself each and every week as I'm watching."
As for the ball often being off-target on his throws this season, McNabb said: "Sometimes you anticipate throws. If you have pressure in your face or whatever it may be, you try to anticipate throws, especially against man coverage. You want to have the ball out before the DB even turns his head around to give your guys an opportunity. Some throws you just miss. Again, for me it's just evaluating myself and watching each and every week, if it's overstriding on the throw, trying to put it outside when the receiver is taking a step inside, whatever it may be. Those things have to be corrected and I look forward to it being corrected.
"It's not just mechanics. It's ball placement, it's making the right read, things of that nature."
On self-evaluating and getting assistance from coaches at his age, McNabb said, "I think it's important for all guys. Once you feel satisfied and think you know everything or can do everything, then you're not saving any room for improvement. I want to be the best at what I do, no matter what age [he is]. I've always tried to keep a critical eye on it. but not only watching for myself, but also get input from quarterback coaches or whatever it may be. Things like that will help you get better at what you do."