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MCMAHON READY, WILLING TO WORK AS CUNNINGHAM’S BACKUP

SHARE MCMAHON READY, WILLING TO WORK AS CUNNINGHAM’S BACKUP

The Philadelphia Eagles' two top quarterbacks, starter Randall Cunningham and newcomer Jim McMahon, say there's nothing wrong with a little competition.

"I don't think we'll have any problems at all," Cunningham said Thursday at the Eagles' voluntary mini-camp. "I think that we're making this a little bit bigger than it is."McMahon told WIP-AM that despite his flamboyant, cocky reputation, he's ready and willing to serve as a backup.

"I've got nothing against Randall Cunningham," he told a radio station interviewer. "He's a great quarterback. My job is to make him better. We've gotten along well in the past.

"I don't think Randall's afraid of competition. I know I'm not. That can only make both of us better players and hopefully we'll be friends. I've gotten along with all the quarterbacks that I've played with."

McMahon, who led the Chicago Bears to the 1986 Super Bowl championship, agreed to a one-year contract with the Eagles on Tuesday. San Diego released him after last season.

"My job is basically gonna be his backup and try to help him whenever I can," McMahon said. "Randall's been very lucky; he's never been injured.

"One of the reasons I'm gonna be there is if something bad happens. Hopefully, that's not gonna happen, but I just got to be ready if something does."

Cunningham said he's ready for competition.

"He's not gonna want to sit on the bench and I wouldn't want to sit on the bench either," Cunningham said. "But we'll see what happens."

McMahon said his reputation as a rowdy rebel is exaggerated.

"I cut my hair weird one time and all of a sudden I'm labeled as wild man," he said.

As for allegedly causing friction on a team, he said, "I've gotten along with my teammates everywhere I've gone. I'm a team player. I want to win. Whatever's best for the team is gonna get done."

Eagles Coach Buddy Ryan was defensive coach on the championship Bears.

"I'm excited about being reunited, not only with Buddy, but a few of my old teammates," McMahon said. "I'm looking forward to the move . . . At least I'll know somebody in Philadelphia. It's like coming home, almost."

The reason he chose the Eagles, he said, was Ryan.

"I'd much rather play for somebody I respect than going somewhere and starting all over," he said.

McMahon, who is competing this weekend in the NBC Celebrity Golf Tournament at Lake Tahoe, Nev., will join six other players or coaches from the mid-1980 Bears in Philadelphia. Besides Ryan and McMahon, the Eagles have coaches Dan Neal, Jeff Fisher and Dale Haupt, and linebacker Al Harris and defensive back Todd Bell.