Donovan McNabb tossed touchdown passes on a broken ankle and played an NFC title game with an agonizing rib injury.
Now McNabb is taking his biggest health risk yet: playing with a severe abdominal strain that likely will need surgery and definitely will leave the five-time Pro Bowl quarterback in discomfort and pain all season.
“Fortunately for me, I haven’t got to the point where you just can’t go,” the Eagles’ star said. “Once that happens, then I think the best way of handling this is not being out there. But I don’t think that would ever happen.”
Trainer Rick Burkholder said rest will not fix the problem and McNabb can play if he can handle the pain. McNabb, who practiced Wednesday, does not have to be sidelined now for the sports hernia.
“We’re hoping it’s something we’ll be able to manage,” Burkholder said. “The plan with Donovan is to allow him to participate, continue to rehabilitate him and we’re going to take it on a day-by-day, game-by-game situation.”
McNabb is expected to start Sunday against Kansas City and is willing to play through his various injuries. McNabb also is playing with soreness in his chest and a shin contusion.
Winborn bolts from Niners
Linebacker Jamie Winborn cleaned out his locker and left the San Francisco 49ers as the club abruptly announced plans to trade the former starter.
Winborn lost his job to converted defensive end Andre Carter last week, and coach Mike Nolan suggested the fifth-year pro should stay away while the 49ers find him a new home.
“He sees himself as a starter, and I would tend to agree with that,” Nolan said. “It just won’t be here.”
No apology from Broncos’ Bailey
Champ Bailey didn’t apologize when he learned he made Kansas City coach Dick Vermeil mad for saying the Chiefs weren’t playing hard.
Instead, Bailey insisted he’d say it again.
“I’m doing my job, doing it well,” Bailey said. “I’m going to keep doing it and I’m going to talk about it.”
At issue were statements Bailey made to teammates during Denver’s 30-10 win over Kansas City on Monday. Bailey wore a microphone during the game and some of his comments were heard on ABC.
Bad news for Pennington
New York Jets quarterback Chad Pennington got the same opinion on his right shoulder from noted orthopedist James Andrews: His rotator cuff is torn.
Pennington visited Andrews in Birmingham, Ala., and had an arthrogram, where dye is injected into the joint and X-rayed to detect any tears. Andrews, who repaired Pennington’s shoulder earlier this year, conferred with the Jets’ medical staff and agreed there was a tear.
Pennington will be treated with rest and rehab and will be re-evaluated in two to three weeks. He is out for the season.
“The Jets signed Kliff Kingsbury to be their third QB.
Around the league
Miami linebacker Junior Seau‘s calf injury has been diagnosed as a strain, and he might be able to play in the team’s next game Oct. 9 at Buffalo. … New England signed running back Amos Zereoue. … Takeo Spikes was placed on injured reserve after the Buffalo Pro-Bowl linebacker had successful surgery on the right Achilles tendon he tore in Sunday’s loss to Atlanta. … Receiver Jason McAddley and cornerback Willie Middlebrooks re-signed with the 49ers, who waived both players before the regular season. … Tennessee quarterback Steve McNair didn’t practice because of a sore foot, but isn’t expected to miss any more time. … Atlanta signed receiver Jerome Pathon. … Minnesota cornerback Brian Williams was ruled out for Sunday’s game against the Falcons because of a sprained left knee. … Pittsburgh linebacker Clark Haggans will miss at least five weeks with a groin injury.
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