Mariucci and Owens finally meet

Niners coach Steve Mariucci revealed on Tuesday that he and star receiver Terrell Owens finally met last week to air out their differences. Here are the details and Mariucci's comments regarding their visit:

 Mariucci flew to Owens' hometown of Atlanta last Monday and met with Owens and his agent, David Joseph, at an airport hotel for approximately three hours the next day.

 "I sat down and had a good conversation with T.O.," Mariucci said. "I got to know him a little better. We talked about a lot of things about the past, a lot of things about the future. It was a very positive meeting, a good conversation between player and coach and worth doing, and I'm glad we had that time together."

 Mariucci and Owens had an ongoing feud throughout the final months of the 2001 season after Owens criticized his coach following a bitter overtime loss to Chicago in October. Owens criticized coaching strategy at least three times last season while Mariucci once responded by saying Owens' comments were "completely void of thought."

 Team management officials had said since the end of the season in January that a meeting between Mariucci and Owens soon would take place. Owens met with team owner John York and general manager Terry Donahue at team headquarters in February, and Mariucci felt it was a better idea that he go to Owens for their summit meeting rather than he asking Owens to come to him. After last week's meeting, Mariucci returned to the Bay Area that evening and continued with the 49ers' draft preparations.

 "It was productive," Mariucci said. "We had a chance to sit down privately in a relaxed atmosphere and discuss the things that we both wanted to talk about, and we worked through that and on we go. I'm not going to get into the details of our conversation - that's between he and I - but it was a good thing to do, it was a positive thing, and it was worth making the trip. Anytime you can communicate at length about anything, you understand each other a little better. And I think we all came away knowing how we all feel and our views of where we would like to go from here."

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