Rick Reilly Go Fish: Eagles

Homecoming: Donovan McNabb

September, 13, 2010
9/13/10
9:20
AM PT
For a quarterback who was ignored by college recruiters out of high school, booed by Philadelphia Eagles fans out of college, and racially profiled by Rush Limbaugh as a pro, Donovan McNabb sure likes to laugh.

We found that out on his Homecoming show -- filmed at the all-boys Mount Carmel High School on the south side of Chicago -- which airs Tuesday night on ESPN, 7 p.m. ET.

For instance, he read the school's morning announcements, just to see if the boys were paying attention.

"There will be a yard sale this weekend at my house, " McNabb announced over the loudspeaker in perfect deadpan.

"BIG sale on Philadelphia Eagles gear."

Turns out, McNabb has always been prankful. When he was in high school, his parents made him take up the trumpet, which he hated. So when he was supposed to be upstairs practicing, he instead went and played basketball and had his older brother, Sean, do it, just loud enough for his parents downstairs to think it was him. Here's a clip of Sean McNabb talking about what happened.

That worked fine until his parents came to the recital, only to be told by the teacher that "Donovan hasn't been around here in a long time." They found him in the gym, playing basketball with the school janitor.

Uh-oh.

The whole two days in Chicago went like that -- McNabb doing impressions, dancing and goofing on everybody -- until his new Redskins teammate, tight end Chris Cooley, got up to tell this story.

"[When I heard about the trade] I thought, 'This is top 10 biggest bonehead trades ever,'" Cooley said. "I was so excited to have him come. ... He was on the radio ... and they started to say, 'Well you have a tight end. Are you excited to throw him the ball?' And he said, 'Yeah, Kevin Conley, he’s a great tight end!"

I thought, 'Wow. He doesn’t even know who I am!'"

He does now. Cooley was McNabb's leading receiver in the Skins' opening win over the Dallas Cowboys, catching six balls for 80 yards.

Wonder if he'd like some Eagles swag?

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