- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 20, 2007

Responding to comments by Donovan McNabb that black NFL quarterbacks are held to a higher standard than their white colleagues, Jason Campbell said yesterday he hasn’t found that to be the case.

“Early in my career in college, I felt like people looked at me differently and expected a lot more,” said Campbell, the Washington Redskins’ starter since November. “I felt I had to do a little extra. At that point, I did feel that way. I don’t feel that way now in the NFL.”

In an HBO interview first aired Tuesday, McNabb, the longtime Philadelphia Eagles franchise player, said black quarterbacks “have to do a little bit extra” because there are so few starting at the position, adding, “people didn’t want us to play this position.”

McNabb and Campbell are two of six black starting quarterbacks in the NFL, joining Baltimore’s Steve McNair, Minnesota’s Tarvaris Jackson, Jacksonville’s David Garrard and Tennessee’s Vince Young.

Even in a winning performance, McNabb said people will say: “Oh, he could have made this throw here. We would have scored more points if he would have done this.”

McNabb said Peyton Manning and Carson Palmer aren’t held to the same standard as black quarterbacks.

“Let me start by saying, I love those guys. But they don’t get criticized as much as we do. They don’t,” McNabb said.

Campbell has long admired McNabb, and he outplayed the veteran in the Redskins’ 20-12 win Monday night in Philadelphia.

“That’s his opinion, and as an African-American quarterback, I have to support other African-American quarterbacks,” Campbell said. “But it’s something I can’t get caught up in. I look at all quarterbacks as the same. I support every guy who’s playing the position.

“It’s the hardest position to play in professional sports, and you get graded differently than any other position on the field. Nine times out of 10 the ball is in your hands, so everybody is watching you. Since you’re in the spotlight, the mistakes get recognized. You need thick skin and a short memory.”

McNabb, meanwhile, did not back off of his comments.

“I don’t regret it,” McNabb told reporters in Philadelphia yesterday. “I don’t regret it at all. I stand by my comments.”

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