When the Broncos released Kyle Orton, the Cowboys put in a waiver claim for his services.
The claim was unsuccessful, but the reasoning behind it made a lot of sense. Jon Kitna is ailing and the team needs to have an option behind Tony Romo should something unfortunate happen to their starting quarterback. Orton has been a starter this season and he wasn't awful before the Broncos gave in to the hordes calling for Tim Tebow.
Now the Vikings have ended their brief relationship with Donovan McNabb and he's available to anyone that wants to claim him off of waivers. Since the Cowboys made a play for Orton, it's reasonable to ask if they will go after McNabb to offer some insurance behind Romo.
They might, but they shouldn't. Orton and McNabb are completely different cases. Orton has played in offenses similar to the one the Cowboys run while McNabb has never been successful in anything other than a West Coast scheme. Orton played well last year and had some decent moments this year while McNabb hasn't played well since 2009.
Those are the on-field reasons, but they only begin to explain why McNabb is a bad fit. Orton has been a backup in the past and he's never developed the sense of entitlement that McNabb has displayed in the last two seasons. Both the Redskins and Vikings got a player who wasn't willing to work hard enough because he was used to simply being the starter without any challenge to that spot.
Based on what he said Thursday, McNabb hasn't been humbled by getting benched two straight seasons. He isn't going to come into the Cowboys locker room willing to just be one of the guys, doing whatever it takes to help the team win games, because he hasn't been willing to do that anywhere else.
The Cowboys have made a strong move away from the individualism of the past over the last couple of seasons. Why would you bring it back now that everything is moving in the right direction with five weeks left in the season?
Should the Bears claim McNabb as an alternative to Caleb Hanie, so be it. Blocking that from happening isn't worth bringing McNabb into a team that has no need for him on or off the field. And, frankly, he isn't going to make the Bears' playoff bid any likelier than holding onto Hanie.
If McNabb were still good enough to make a difference in the event of a Romo injury, he'd be worth the risk of upsetting the apple cart. He's not good enough to do that, though. Just go with Stephen McGee and let the cards fall where they might.
Hopefully it doesn't come to that, but it doesn't make the Cowboys' chances of surviving the season any worse if it does.