Vikings quarterback Donovan McNabb said he, left guard Steve Hutchinson and defensive end Jared Allen stood up and spoke to the entire team on Monday at Winter Park.
Basically, the message to the younger players was to not panic, avoid pointing fingers and to focus on correctable mistakes in the wake of an 0-2 start.
"I've been part of teams that were 0-2, 1-2, whatever it may be," McNabb said today in Eden Prairie during a corporate charity function set up by the Donovan McNabb Foundation.
"But the team still got closer enough where everyone had that confidence knowing that that next game we were going to win. And once you get one, you feel like you're going to win the next. Then you get on a winning streak and all of a sudden that confidence level is at a high to where every time you step on the field, you feel like you're going to win the game."
In 2003, McNabb's Philadelphia Eagles started the season 0-2 with home losses to the Buccaneers (17-0) and the Patriots (31-10). The Eagles bounced back, finished 12-4 and advanced to the NFC Championship game.
"I've been 0-2 before and with the attitude of understanding it's a must-win situation," McNabb said. "That's the way this team is approaching it. [Coach] Leslie [Frazier] doesn't have to get up and tell us anything. we know what we need to do.
"The leaders on this team have already spoke up and addressed the team on what needs to be done. When you're 0-2, there's no need to panic. But there is a sense of urgency that needs to take place. And we will get that going as the week goes on in practice and put it out on the field. I think we have the guys and the talent to do that."
McNabb said he didn't bring up the Eagles' 2003 season while talking to the team.
"I won't bring that up," he said. "I always believe you stop talking about your ownself. Let's address what we need to do as a team. I've been a part of different things with another team. Nobody wants to hear what I did back in Philly. I don't want to hear about what happened in Philly. But I've been a part of that. And I've had that experience. We knew what we needed to do to change that, and we can do that here."
Other McNabb highlights:
- During a Q&A with KFAN's Paul Allen that was conducted in front of invited Twin Cities business leaders, McNabb said he still has many more years to play and "a lot of gas left in the tank." But when he does retire, he said he will go into broadcasting.
- Asked what it was like to play a year with Terrell Owens, McNabb simply said, "Memorable."
- Vikings VP Steve LaCroix said it was the first time in his 11 years with the team that a player asked him to assemble community business leaders to help the player become more involved in local charitable causes. McNabb's foundation helps a variety of causes with an emphasis on children and diabetes.