FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - For a quarterback whose future with the Eagles has been the subject of much speculation, Donovan McNabb looked awfully relaxed and carefree with the media at the NFC's first Pro Bowl practice yesterday morning.
He reiterated that he is confident he will stay with the Eagles. Later, holding court for another 10 minutes at the hotel, he was pressed on how he could be so sure.
"I have a psychic and she told me; she said, 'Good things are to happen in Philadelphia and it's going to be really good for you,' " McNabb said while doing his best Jamaican psychic impersonation. " 'Just relax. You'll get what you need.' "
McNabb, entering the final year of his contract, isn't just taking Miss Cleo's word for it. He also has Andy Reid's.
The Eagles coach said McNabb was still his guy after the playoff loss to the Dallas Cowboys a little more than 2 weeks ago, and McNabb said he is taking him at his word.
"Why wouldn't I be [back]? We've been going through this the last 2 or 3 years and I've been in one spot," said McNabb, who replaced the Saints' Drew Brees on the Pro Bowl roster after New Orleans advanced to the Super Bowl. "I don't want to be anywhere else but Philly, and Andy came out to say it and the guys want me back and that's the most important thing."
McNabb echoed a recent post on his blog when he said he wanted to remain with the Eagles to "finish the job."
"I love being in Philly," he said. "I've been there 11 years, we've had a lot of success over the years and I don't believe in starting somewhere and going somewhere else to finish your career.
"I believe in starting somewhere and finishing what you started and my goal is to win a Super Bowl and bring it back to Philadelphia because I think they deserve it. We've given them some great years, but we just haven't been able to finish and I think good things are going to happen pretty soon."
McNabb said he does not let the speculation bother him and has not given any thought to whether the grass might be greener elsewhere.
At the Senior Bowl yesterday, an official of a team that McNabb has been linked to in trade speculation said he would be interested, but does not think the Eagles will move McNabb.
"I let other people think about that," McNabb said. "For me, the grass being greener is really what field we're playing on, and when you're in Philadelphia obviously there are ups and there are downs and I've been a part of it for 11 years so it doesn't affect me at all."
It's usually not easy for a player to go into the last year of his contract without really knowing how he fits into the team's plans. But McNabb, 33, is an 11-year veteran who has appeared in five previous Pro Bowls, five NFC Championship Games and one Super Bowl.
Having gone through so much drama during his career, McNabb is just looking to have fun playing football again.
"I love playing the game and that's what it comes down to and I am under contract for a year," he said. "So we don't know what's going to happen in 2011. We just don't know and if I have to come back and play [for the Eagles], hey that's great. I would love to because I love this team. I love being around these guys and competing."
McNabb had no desire to run away from the television cameras, microphones and tape recorders after practice yesterday. McNabb did a live interview with the NFL Network, then a 7-minute session with ESPN's Chris Mortensen and a large group of reporters. He kept talking as he walked out of the stadium to an awaiting hotel shuttle.
After he reached the street, where fans lined up hoping for an autograph, McNabb answered questions for another 4 minutes about everything from how close he thinks the Eagles are to being a Super Bowl-caliber team again to what the future holds for running back Brian Westbrook.
"He's feeling great," McNabb said of Westbrook. "He's looking outstanding, and for him as well, we've been through this thing with the ins and outs and you want to see [Brian] just continue on with his career. I talked to him and he looks forward to getting back. And for all the talk that people are saying 'retirement' and whatever it may be, it's all false. So we'll see."
McNabb also said he expects Michael Vick to return to the Eagles, although it is unlikely that McNabb, Vick and Kevin Kolb would all return.
No word on what his psychic had to say about that.