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Mike Shanahan, still playing games, won’t declare McNabb starter

Mike Shanahan

Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan paces the sidelines during the second half of an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Monday, Nov. 15, 2010, in Landover, Md. The Eagles defeated the Redskins 59-28. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)


Welcome to another odd week of seemingly unnecessary mental warfare from Redskins coach Mike Shanahan.

After increased whispers that Rex Grossman could start at quarterback for Washington Sunday in Dallas, Jay Glazer of FOX appeared to close the door shut on the issue by reporting that Donovan McNabb will indeed start.

Shanahan decided to open the door on Wednesday, if only to have a little fun.

“We’re not committing to tell you who the starters are at any position,” Shanahan said via the Associated Press. “They’ve got to get ready for a couple of players. That’s good for us.”

(Following that quote, the Cowboys began to feverishly prepare for backup outside linebacker Chris Wilson in addition to Brian Orakpo.)

Shanahan appeared to be having fun with the media, and no one seems to believe Grossman will start this week. That includes McNabb, who said he’d expect to hear from Shanahan if he was getting benched.

“I would have hoped,” McNabb said. “That’s professionalism. Communication.”